The house in which Eldridge Gant was murdered. The tin box was hidden in the upstairs bedroom on the left side of the house.
Eldridge Gant, 96 years old, is tortured and killed in the fall of 2006 in his own home in western Hennepin County, but not before he tells Toby and Mack where $1,450 in mint-condition Civil War gold and silver coins are hidden, now worth $2,472,250.
Detective Anna Fitzgerald, a beautiful and intelligent woman and a career detective with the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office Investigative Division, is assigned to the case.
Not only must she solve the murder case, but she also becomes involved with a genealogical search to determine who the Civil War coins really belong to, a mystery centered on whether Gertrude Ackerman, born in either 1866 or 1868, is the daughter of Anton Schaar or Jakob Meyer. Anna has a personal stake in this because she is the only living descendant of Gertrude, but there are all sorts of brick walls that make the unfolding mystery of the heritage of Gertrude Ackerman a challenging search that is only solved by hard work and the hand of luck.
The narrator of the story is Time, who is omnipresent but not omniscient and can’t read minds or delve into the future. He is a recorder who has the advantage of seeing everything that happens back to the beginning of time. He is the only one who knows the story of the second murder of the novel – Jakob Meyer being locked in a wood cellar in 1865 and left to die.
In addition to the two murders and the genealogical search, the fourth element in this book is the romance of Anna Fitzgerald and Jack Quinn, who is a genealogist par excellence.
The story has twists and turns in both the murders and genealogical search that will leave readers on the edge of their seats thinking one thing is going to happen and then finding outcomes that are much different than what they thought, with the final outcome of the four threads of the story coming to a conclusion in the last four chapters, one chapter for each thread.