Shunned and Dangerous By Laura Bradford

Jun 14, 2014 | 2014 Articles, Mysteryrat's Maze, Sandra Murphy

by Sandra Murphy

Details at the end of this review on how to enter to win a copy of Shunned and Dangerous.

In Heavenly, Pennsylvania, the Amish live in peace and harmony, or at least that’s the goal. Strife and problems can arise anywhere though. Claire Weatherly is English and not Amish. She owns Heavenly Treasures, a store that sells crafts made by the Amish. Unfortunately, the items that sell and are fastest to make are all small which means her sales totals are small too. She’s in danger of losing the store and is sick at heart about it. She hasn’t even told her Aunt Diane yet, owner of the local B&B for those seeking the Amish experience.

There is good news though. Esther, her assistant in the store, and Eli are getting married. On the other hand, an Amish woman does not hold a job outside the home once she’s married. Claire will miss her daily visits with Esther and is also worried that if no farm land is available in Heavenly, Esther and Eli will be forced to move to another Amish community. book

Claire has long been attracted to two Amish men, Benjamin and Jakob. The men used to be friends until Jakob’s intended married Benjamin instead. Jakob left the Amish community after baptism which means he is now shunned by his neighbors, friends and most hurtfully, his family.

For now, Claire will focus on what she can do, not what she can’t. One thing she enjoys is a good puzzle and Mose Fischer (Jakob’s father) has built a corn maze with a harder maze in the middle. Claire is certain she can solve it and come out the other side. It was a good plan until she came across the body of Harley Zook, an Amish dairy farmer.

Jakob is the local police so it will be very difficult to investigate a murder that occurred on his father’s farm, especially since Mose and Harley didn’t get along, and Mose was vocal about it. Still, there are other suspects. The young man who worked for Harley is a prime candidate.

It takes a deft hand to weave background stories that hold a reader’s attention as well as move the plot along to catch the murderer. Laura Bradford does a fine job of this. As readers, we care about Diane’s B&B, her guests, Esther and Eli, the hint of romance with Benjamin and more than a hint with Jakob, and worry what will happen if Heavenly Treasures has to close its doors.

The Amish community and the way of thinking is a character too, with information woven seamlessly into the storyline.

I think this is the best in the series yet, as Claire has to face what she really wants in life and how far she’s come since her arrival in Heavenly, Pennsylvania.

Previous books are Hearse and Buggy, Assaulted Pretzel, both reviewed for KRL.

To enter to win a copy of Shunned and Dangerous, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Shunned,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen June 21, 2014. U.S. residents only.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & short stories in our mystery section.

Sandra Murphy lives in the shadow of the arch, in the land of blues, booze and shoes—St Louis, Missouri. While writing magazine articles to support her mystery book habit, she secretly polishes two mystery books of her own, hoping, someday, they will see the light of Barnes and Noble. You can also find several of Sandra’s short stories on UnTreed Reads including her new one Bananas Foster.

9 Comments

  1. This is a good series. I didn’t know there was a new installment until I read this. Good news!

    Reply
  2. This sounds like a really good book would love to read and win. Thanks

    Reply
  3. I can’t wait to read this book 🙂

    Reply
  4. Sounds like a great summer read. I keep getting more and more interested in the Amish way of life. Would love to read this.

    Reply
  5. love Amish novels

    Reply
  6. I love the town’s name in this book. Who wouldn’t want to live in Heavenly. City names have always interested me since an incident in college. I had a freshman history lecture of 500 people. I missed one lecture because of illness, and totally embarrassed myself at the next class. The instructor was doing a short review of the previous class. The topic covered a particular city in PA–Intercourse, PA to be precise. I found myself laughing away–totally making me blush four shades of red, until my seat mate told me that the whole class went nuts about that city the day before. Moral of this story–never miss a lecture for any reason!! So……. I MUST read about Heavenly, PA!!

    Reply
  7. Would love to read this. Amish and a mystery. Perfect combination in my opinion.
    Thanks

    Reply
  8. Sounds like a good read, thanks for offer!

    Reply
  9. Thanks for all the comments! We have a winner
    Lorie Ham, KRL Publisher

    Reply

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