Tuesday, 17 September 2013

A Plain Disappearance (An Appleseed Creek Mystery) - Amanda Flower

As Christmas approaches, Chloe Humphrey is still settling into her new life in Appleseed Creek, in the middle of Amish Country. Her excitement in seeing where her budding relationship with Timothy Troyer (who left the Amish way of life) is put to one side when they discover a dead body, frozen in the snow...on their first date.

The body belongs to Amish teenager Katie Lambright; and near the scene of the crime is evidence that Timothy's friend, Billy Thorpe, may be involved. Timothy can't believe there is any involvement until the police reveal that Billy isn't who he says he is. And to make matters worse, Billy disappears.

Donning her amateur sleuthing cap Chloe begins to unearth the mystery surrounding Katie's death. By the request of Chief of Police, Chloe talks to the Amish community eliciting information about the teenagers life. The investigation reveals a young girl who fraternized with 'Englischer's', her father's temper and there was a rivalry for her affections between two local boys. Can Chloe discover the truth behind the death? Will she be able to break through the wall that the Amish community build to keep people out?

The third book in the Appleseed Mysteries, Flower's novel is a balanced mix of murder, intrigue and the Amish lifestyle. Chloe, in all respects an outsider, manages to be a part of Timothy's family and interact with other Amish families without being too intrusive, well until she really has to be. Not always afraid to voice her opinion, Chloe has tenacity, loyalty and great deal of respect for the Amish people. In her quest to find a solution to the death of Katie, she has to face a few truths about her own life.

A well thought out mystery with likable characters, the author has created a well paced novel that keeps you guessing right to the end. With side characters like Grandfather Zook and Tanisha adding their own humor and insight, the story flowed without being too heavy. As a fan of Amish fiction, reading a murder mystery regarding this private set of people was a great twist on the many books already out there. I liked that the underlying theme was about faith and hope. Written in an easy style, with excellent descriptions conveying both the people, family strife and scenery makes for a well rounded novel. A highly recommended read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Handlebar Publishing to review. The opinions expressed are my own and I am not required to give a positive critique. 


  1. I love mysteries and maybe because I live in Europe, I have a fascination with the Amish, it's like going back in time to a purer culture, not yet touched by the 'Western world'. Love reading books about them.

  2. Couldn't agree more; there are some great Amish fiction/authors out there. Besides discovering Amanda Flower, Cindy Woodsmall is also an excellent author when it comes to all things Amish. Thanks for your comments.

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