Suspense set against the backdrop of a quiet Amish
community is enough to keep the pages turning in Vanetta Chapman’s newest
novel. Vannetta delivers a fascinating Amish mystery, cozy with a good dose of
romance in Murder Simply Brewed
(Zondervan), book one in the Amish Village Mystery series. Readers are given a team of Amish and Englischer
good guys as well as numerous potential suspects who are connected to the Amish
Artisan Village, a hotel and shops complex in Middlebury, Indiana.
Hannah, a 22-year-old Amish girl, works at the Quilting Bee and
notices early one morning as she is opening the shop that she does not smell
coffee brewing next door at The Simple Blend shop. Then she notices that the
shop window is shattered. Inside she finds Ethan Gray, the shop manager, dead.
Hannah quickly notifies Amber, the 40ish Englischer general
manager of the Amish Artisan Village. When the police arrive, they determine
that someone shot up the window with a BB gun but that Ethan simply died of a
heart attack. Amber is sure the police are wrong.
Then more incidents of destruction occur. Tate, neighbor to the
Amish Artisan Village, finds fresh red paint splattered on the trail next to
his farm. Later that night an animal carcass is left on Amber’s front porch. Next
there is trouble at another store at Amish Artisan Village. Someone is leaving
bible verses at the scene of each episode of vandalism. What could those
messages possibly mean? Everyone’s nerves are on edge with no answers in sight.
Englischer Amber and Amish Hannah team up to try to solve the
mysterious events when the police say they are too busy to handle all the vandalism
calls. Interwoven with the mystery are budding romances for Amber with her
neighbor, Tate, and for Hannah with her friend, Jesse. Both guys jump in and get
involved in solving the case. All that sleuthing around in the dark is bound to
further a romance. Will they be able to figure out who is causing all this
trouble before someone else gets hurt? And was Ethan’s death simply a heart
attack or is it something more sinister?
Murder Simply Brewed is
a well written, page turning Amish murder mystery book. It gives readers a
plausible plot, interesting suspects, likeable heroes, and many questions to
ponder. Vannetta Chapman skillfully reveals the answers to those questions and
wraps up the mystery with a happy ending. Murder Simply Brewed released
March 25, 2014.
Gloria is a 59-year-old retired RN and former accountant who has
a life long love of reading. She has spent the last two years reading every
Amish novel she can get her hands on. When not reading, Gloria spends her day trading stocks and options,
tweeting under the name of @gloriason, and expressing her gratitude to God. She blogs at amishreader.blogspot.com.