Friday, July 4, 2014
Shunned and Dangerous
SHUNNED AND DANGEROUS
Living in the small town of Heavenly, Pennsylvania, Claire Weatherly has come to admire the Amish for their wholesome, honest way of life. But she also knows that nothing is as simple as it seems—especially when murder disturbs the peace.
Claire has always been game for a good puzzle, so when she hears that Mose Fisher has made one of his famous corn mazes, she can’t wait to walk the paths and test her skill. But she’ll have a much more serious puzzle to solve when, deep inside the maze, she discovers the body of Amish dairy farmer Harley Zook.
It won’t be easy for Detective Jakob Fisher to investigate a murder on his own father’s farm—not after being shunned by the man for leaving the Amish community and becoming a cop. With Mose himself as a suspect, and old family secrets cropping up, it’s up to Claire to help catch the killer before she finds herself at a dead end.
First off -- clever title. And her others in An Amish Mystery series are just as witty. Hearse and Buggy and Assaulted Pretzel. This is the third book in the series and while some of the storylines are ongoing it still reads well as a standalone. I haven't read the others (but I will!) and I thoroughly enjoyed this cozy mystery read. In fact I couldn't put it down for a few reasons.
Number one: Great characterization. Love the heroine, Claire. The whole story is told from her point of view so the reader really gets to know her well. Her observations on the Amish echo my own thoughts and really anchors the whole plot. Discovering clues, rejecting clues, worrying over the ramifications of clues right along with Claire really carried me through the story.
Number two: The Amish element. Bradford does a wonderful job of delving into their community and day to day living with authenticity and respect.
Number three: The Mystery. Cleverly drawn out with enough red herrings to sort through to make solving it challenging. I began to have an inkling about two thirds of the way through the book, but it was only an inkling. I fleshed it out through Claire's eyes and in her time. That really made it a page turner for me.
A wonderful cozy mystery to keep you company one lazy summer afternoon.