- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Minotaur Books (June 21, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0312374992
- ISBN-13: 978-0312374990
About the book:
The New York Times bestselling series hailed as "gripping" (People magazine) and "compelling" (USA Today) returns with Police Chief Kate Burkholder called to the scene of a horrific tragedy on a peaceful Amish farm.
The Slabaugh family are model Amish farmers, prosperous and hardworking, with four children and a happy extended family. When the parents and an uncle are found dead in their barn, it appears to be a gruesome accident: methane gas asphyxiation caused by a poorly ventilated cesspit. But in the course of a routine autopsy, the coroner discovers that one of the victims suffered a head wound before death--clearly, foul play was involved. But who would want to make orphans of the Slabaughs' children? And is this murder somehow related to a recent string of shocking hate crimes against the Amish?
Having grown up Amish, Kate is determined to bring the killer to justice. Because the other series of attacks are designated hate crimes, the state sends in agent John Tomasetti, with whom Kate has a long and complex relationship. Together, they search for the link between the crimes--and uncover a dark secret at work beneath the placid surface of this idyllic Amish community.
My take on this book:
Someone is committing hate crimes against the Amish in and around Painter's Mill Ohio, such as killing livestock, and running buggies off of roads, its gotten so bad that the state has sent in John Tomasetti to look into it. When county gets a call to go to the Slabaugh farm what they find is the shocking, the adults at the farm have all fallen into a manure pit in the barn and died, it appears to be an accident but the county coroner soon thinks differently. Have the vandals stepped up their game and starting killing the Amish?
I have read each book in this series and think this one is my favorite by far. Kate Burkholder who grew up Amish is the chief of police in Painter's Mill. The relationship between her and John Tomasetti is finally getting more serious in this one, the ironic thing is that in prior novels he was struggling and Kate was more grounded but in this story we get an about face. John is finally getting his life back together while Kate is struggling to deal with not only the past but the weight of trying to get the Amish to cooperate so that they can figure out who is committing the hate crimes.
The mystery in this book is very well written, and you feel like your along on the case as Kate goes from place to place trying to solve the case. The twists were often a bit shocking, but the ending was the biggest shock of all, something I never saw coming and would have never guessed!
This book fits into two of my favorite genres, a fast paced mystery that left me guessing set in Amish country it doesn't get any better than that, throw in the personal issues and the bit of romance that's included and you have a page turning read that will keep you guessing right up until the end! I for one can't wait for the next book in this fantastic series!