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jenn

Murder by Death

I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.

Murder Plain and Simple (Amish Quilt Shop Mystery #1)

Murder, Plain and Simple - Isabella Alan

In the cozy mystery genre (sub-genre?), Amish is the new bandwagon.  

 

I suppose when trying to develop unique themes for series mysteries, it gets to be rather hard to find anything new, and the Amish culture certainly seems to be one that a lot of people find fascinating (including myself).  I love contemplating a life without technology; without electricity.  Could I do it?  Or would I end up tackling some poor, unsuspecting Englischer for his iPhone?  Honestly, I suspect the dress and bonnet would get to me long before the lack of tech.  Oh well, in the meantime, I can read about being Amish.

 

The author, Isabella Alan, published a short story before the release of this first book, introducing the characters and allowing readers to meet Angie's Aunt before she passes away (the premise of the series being Angie moves back to her hometown when she inherits her Aunt's store).  It was a nice little novella that I reviewed earlier, and it did make it easier to dive into this story without needing the introductions 

I like Angie as the main character, she's got some life in her, a little bit of sass, and she dotes on her dog.  She feels like a real character to me; not as deep as she could be, but not nearly so shallow or caricature-istic as some cozy characters.  The supporting cast is mostly Amish and I give kudos to the author - she doesn't create one-dimensional characters out of them just because they're Amish.  There are likeable characters and there are a few that ought to go back and brush up on the basic tenants of their faith a bit more.  A couple are just mean and nasty.  The obvious love interest is the Sheriff, of course (makes it hard for the amateur sleuth to investigate without an 'in' with the authorities), and I liked him - not a lot of detail about him in this book, but what there is is likeable.  The author also had me at "aquamarine eyes".  I fell hard for a boy in high school simply because he had the most amazing blue-green eyes I had ever, and have ever, seen.  But Angie's old childhood friend, Jonah (Amish) looks to create some awkward moments, though there's no chance of a love triangle developing - thank god!!!

 

The plot itself was very well done.  Red herrings, lots of suspects, and I didn't have a clue until the author dropped the give-away hint.  The ending, well, not the most plausible ending I've read, but certainly not the most far-out.

I'll definitely be on the lookout for her next book in this series - not to mention a 'donut-as-big-as-my-head' - where can I get me one of those?  And can I get it filled with custard please?