“What the Bishop Saw” begins in Goshen, Indiana. Henry Lapp is beaned in a baseball game and as a result has acquired savant syndrome. This allows him to display unusual skills in art. He is able to draw everything he sees, right down to the facial expressions. He and his parents almost consider this a curse.
Fifty-two years later finds Henry in San Luis Valley, Colorado as bishop of an Amish community. Someone is setting fires and in one of them a man died. The whole town is on edge, but it seems that the arsonist is targeting only Amish families, causing some of them to move away instead of trying to find the person responsible. Henry resists using his “gift” to help, but pressure from his friends cause him to draw exactly what he saw at the first fire. His uncanny ability to capture absolutely everything around him at a particular moment finds clues that would not be recognizable at all. This novel by Vanetta Chapman is entertaining. It is centered around a syndrome that is quite rare and the story surrounding it brings to light the problems that it sometimes causes. I like the book, it kept me interested.
Shelley Shepard Gray begins a new series, The Amish of Hart County with “Her Secret”. Hannah Hilty and her family, mother, father, brother and sister, have been forced to move from their home in Ohio to a small town, Munfordville, Kentucky. Their reason for selling out and moving is to get away from someone who is stalking Hannah. Some in the family think that Hannah is over reacting to notes, flowers and unwanted gifts. However, the stalker was getting more brazen and scary. Hannah’s brother and sister, especially, are having problems adjusting to a smaller town with all that small towns bring with them. Hannah does not venture out unless it is necessary. She is a virtual prisoner in her own home because of her fear of being the target of the stalker again, when she befriends a young man who is her neighbor. She is trying to let herself become her own person again and not be afraid of her own shadow. However, things start happening to make her think that her pursuer is back. She knows who it is and she seems to think that he has followed her and her family to their new location. She is not mistaken though, and her fears increase as the stalker comes closer and closer to her. She has to decide whether or not to let him take over her life or overcome her fears and choose to let people into her life who can help her.
I thought that this was a really good Amish thriller. It didn’t take me long to read it because I enjoyed it so much. I received a print copy of this book from Litfuse.com in return for my honest review.
Amy Lillard has written six books in the series, The Wells Landing Series. “Marrying Jonah” is the sixth book. These stories written about the Wells Landing community and its Amish residents portray life within the confines of the Amish religion. Sarah Yoder has been smitten with Jonah Miller for years, even as a young girl. But Jonah only has eyes for Lorie, who is torn between the English and Amish worlds and finally makes her decision to leave the community. Jonah still loves Lori and is not ready to take on a new love.
Sarah happens to be at the wrong place at the wrong time when Jonah takes her to talk by the pond that they used to frequent as children. Her loving heart and his grieving heart come together and in comforting each other, they go over the line of good sense. After a few weeks, Sarah finds that she is pregnant and tells Jonah who reluctantly makes things right by marrying her. They both go through the shunning and the public confession that will let them stay in the church’s good graces. However, that does not mean that their marriage will be easy and happy.
Join Amy Lillard as she shows how doing the right thing isn’t always easy or rewarding. I enjoyed the book and the other books in this series.
I received a print advance reader’s copy of this book from NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.
Jane Jensen has written “Kingdom Come” the first in the Elizabeth Harris series. Detective Harris is a former NYPD homicide detective. After her husband was murdered during a robbery, she resigned her position there and returned to her old stomping ground in Pennsylvania. She works as a homicide detective for the Lancaster police force. This story begins with the discovery of a young “English” girl in the barn of one of the Amish farming families by one of the sons. There is a definite difference of opinion between two of the detectives, Harris and Grady, about the probability that the murder was committed by an Amish person. The investigation moves on and then another body is found. This time it is the body of a young Amish girl. The two victims have been known to have been friends and further investigation does not reveal a suspect. However, Elizabeth Harris has a hunch; and going against the department’s orders, she continues her search for the perpetrator among the Amish. The action doesn’t stop in this novel and keeps the reader wanting more.
I think this is a fine first book in this series. I would like to continue to read this series as the books become available.
I was sent a free print copy of this book by NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.
Kelly Long has written a series of books about the Amish of Ice Mountain. “The Amish Heart of Ice Mountain” is the latest that I have read. All the books were very entertaining and had a good storyline. My only problem with her stories is the sections where explicit intimacies are spelled out. This doesn’t seem to correspond to the Amish themes of these novels. The story moves along at a good pace and is easy to read and not readily easy to put down.
I received a Print copy of this book from NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.
Since I am a fan of Amish fiction, I was glad to review “Lorie’s Heart” by Amy Lillard. Most Amish-themed books I have read glorify the ideals and beliefs of the Amish community. The simple way of life, the shunning of all worldly inventions and progress are presented as a way of life that embraces the will of God. There are many rules and expectations concerning this way of life and I’m sure many of us could not live with these constraints. Lorie Kauffman’s father has been killed in an accident. What follows is the revelation that all is not what it seemed for Henry Kauffman. He has been living two lives and Lorie’s pursuit of the truth leads her to question everything she has known. I really liked this book and would recommend it highly.
I received a free print copy of the book in return for my honest opinion of the book from NightOwlReviews.com.
“Unforeseeable” by Nancy Mehl is an Amish mystery novel. The story kept my interest and attention from the beginning paragraph. A body is discovered in an Amish community that seems to be the work of a serial killer. Murders like this occurred there many years ago and the perpetrator was never caught. It is baffling that this same killer would return after so many years. There is no end to the list of suspects. Even the new pastor is suspect, much to Callie’s dismay. Her marriage to this man could be in jeopardy.
I enjoyed reading this novel and would recommend it to anyone who loves to read Amish novels. I was sent a print copy of this book by Bethany House in return for my honest review.