Plain Dead (An Amish Mystery #3)by Emma Miller

Published December 29th 2015 by Kensington

4.5 Stars

Synopsis: When a newspaperman is murdered in the Amish community of Stone Mill, Pennsylvania, Rachel Mast digs up the dirt to find out who wanted to bury the lead…
Although she left her Old Order Amish ways in her youth, Rachel discovered corporate life in the English world to be complicated and unfulfilling. Having returned to Stone Mill, she’s happy to be running her own B&B. But she’s also learning—in more ways than one—that the past is not always so easily left behind.
After local newspaperman Bill Billingsly is found gagged and tied to his front porch, left to freeze overnight in a snowstorm, Detective Evan Parks—Rachel’s beau—uncovers a file of scandalous information Billingsly intended to publish, including a record of Rachel pleading no contest to charges of corporate misconduct. Though Evan is certain of her innocence, it’s up to Rachel to find the real killer. A closer examination of the victim’s unpublished report leads Rachel to believe the Amish community is far from sinless. But if she’s not careful her obituary might be the next to appear in print…

My Review: This is the first book I have read in the “Amish Mystery” series but it will not be the last. I had no problem with following the story or the characters even though it is the third book in the series.

Rachel Mast, is a character that lives between two worlds. Born and raised Amish, she left home at seventeen to go to university and then went to live in the big city and work for Corporate America. When that did not pan out, she returned home, but not to the Amish home, she lives as an Englisher and runs a Bed & Breakfast as well as a gift shop. She is the chairperson of the “Winter Frolic” a festival to highlight the town and well as the Amish people. The only bee in her bonnet at this time is Bill Billingsly, a nosy, interfering, newspaperman with lots of gossipy research. Then he is discovered, dead of exposure, frozen to death on his front porch. With all the people he has upset and alienated, there are many suspects and Rachel is one of them. She must find out who the real culprit it to clear her name.

This story is filled with mystery, suspense, and romance. Rachel’s character is strong, loyal, smart, stubborn, persistant and doing an amazing job of balancing her old and new worlds. She is so caring of the Amish world and its traditions that they let her in, even though she has left the “Plain World” to live as an Englisher. The mystery in this story is well plotted and will keep you guessing as to who is the guilty party. I changed my mind on who it was a few times and I love when I think I have it all figured out only to be thrown in a different direction by the author. I did figure it out just before the reveal, and that made the story even more interesting for me. Definitely an author I will follow, especially as I learn more about the Amish life.