Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Plain Death by Amanda Flower

A Plain Death is Amanda Flower's third book with more on the way.  Her first book, Maid of Murder, was nominated for an Agatha Award.  I was sure I had this mystery figured out by page 4.  I was partly right and mostly wrong. 

Chloe Humphrey is a young computer whiz who moves to a small middle-of-Ohio town complete with a thriving Amish community.  Her first two friends are an ex-Amish brother and sister, Timothy and Becky Troyer.

All is not well in Appleseed Creek.  Chloe's first task as head of the computer department at the local college is to fire one of her staff.  Since she doesn't know any of them, she is hard pressed to make a decision.

Chloe's house needs work and, since she rescues Becky from a pair of bullies before she hits the city limits, she ends up with an unplanned roommate on day one.  This ends up as an unexpected blessing, because Becky's brother is a carpenter.  It also ends up as less than a blessing because Becky borrows Chloe's car without permission.  When the brakes fail, Becky runs into the Amish bishop's buggy and he is killed instantly. 

Accident?  Murder?  How could it be murder unless someone knew Becky and the bishop would be on the same road at the same time?  Will Becky be shunned by her family?  Will she end up in jail?  How is Chloe going to find her way in a new job and a new town in the middle of all this chaos?

I thought this was an excellent book.


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