Sunday, March 1, 2015

Suspendered Sentence ~ Laura Bradford ~ Guest Post and review along with a giveaway

 I want to welcome Laura Bradford author of the popular Amish Mystery Series to WV Stitcher today sharing secrets about her favorite book.

   Shhhh… Don’t Tell, Okay?
    By Laura Bradford
   (author of SUSPENDERED SENTENCE    

Often times, at an event, I’m asked which of my books is my favorite. 

It’s a great question, but it’s also one of those ones that always makes me a bit nervous to answer. After all, if my books are like my babies, isn’t signaling one out akin to favoritism?


But books are books. Everyone has a book they like more than others—a book that resonated on a different level somehow. 

Take for example, A CRY IN THE NIGHT by Mary Higgins Clark. I’ve read a lot of mysteries in my day, but to me, that book stands out as a favorite read. For me. I liked the main character (Jenny McPartland), I felt her joys and her fears, and I felt her terror. As a reader, I’ve connected with a lot of characters over the years, but none like I did Jenny.

So if I can pick a favorite book as a reader, I should be able to pick one out as a writer, yes? I mean, surely there’s a book (or two) that I’ve written that holds a special place of honor in my mind… After all, some books represented milestones, others introduced characters that touched my heart in just the right way at just the right time (like Mary Higgins Clark’s did for me when I was fourteen).

To that end, I sat down and tried to select my favorite book from the twenty I have released so far. And you know what? I couldn’t pick one. It was just too hard. My books really are like my babies.

Then I decided I could separate my babies by series—that way each one was represented. Selecting a favorite from each was still hard, but one naturally floated to the top in each case. I present those to you now…

Back in 2005-2008, I wrote a series called, The Jenkins & Burns Mysteries. In their first life, they were trade paperbacks. In their second life, they were book club mass market paperbacks, and now—in their re-incarnated state (complete with new titles) they are E-books. There were three books in that series.  My favorite in that series would be the first, JURY OF ONE (now called, DEADLY READINGS). As my very first novel ever, it was a dream-come-true.

In 2009, I started writing the Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries under the pen name, Elizabeth Lynn Casey. As of next month (when WEDDING DURESS releases on April 7th), I’ll be up to ten books in that series. In that time, I’ve grown mighty close to the characters in this series. They’ve made me laugh, they’ve made me cry, and they’ve shocked me a time or two. Needless to say, choosing one of the ten (so far) is tough to do. I’ve loved them all for one reason or the other.  But since I said I’d choose one, I’ll go with LET IT SEW (# 7). Everything about that book just came together. I loved working with a character who had Alzheimer’s, and I loved the sub-plot involving a real-live Grinch (who got her comeuppance in the end).

I veer off here for a quick moment to mention four contemporary romances I wrote for Harlequin American. They were not part of a series, but rather individual books. For the purpose of picking a favorite, I’ll select one from the four.  Two of the four were nominated for a RT Reviewers’ Choice Award in 2010 and one actually won! I loved those stories, of course, but my favorite of the four released in 2012. STORYBOOK DAD is the story of a woman with Multiple Sclerosis and her path to love. This book will forever hold a special place in my heart because, I, too have MS, and I’ve received so many letters from MS’ers about this book and its impact on them. 

Now, switching back to mysteries, we’re down to my newest series, the Amish Mysteries. First, let me say, I love everything about these books. I love the research they’ve allowed me to do, the characters who have claimed a piece of my heart, and the storylines that resonate with me, one after the other. SUSPENDERED SENTENCE, the 4th book in the series, just released this week and I have to say, this is my favorite in the series (so far). The plot intrigued me from the very first nugget and ran me through a gamut of emotions from sadness, to anger, to shock. Even now, a full year after having first turned it in to my editor, I still find myself thinking about the characters most affected by this story line.

And, since it’s my newest release, I thought I’d share a little teaser to see if that initial nugget pulls you in just like it did me:

Nineteen years ago, Sadie Lehman simply up and disappeared during her Rumspringa in the Amish community of Heavenly, Pennsylvania. Led to believe her daughter had gotten caught up in the English world by the girl’s peers, Waneta clung to hope that one day Sadie would come back.
Yet while Waneta prayed for a reunion, Sadie’s friends hoped for something very different—that Sadie’s body would never be discovered.

See why I love this one? 

So there you go. I picked favorites among my book babies.

You won’t tell, will you?


Image result for laura bradford amish mysteryLaura Bradford (aka Elizabeth Lynn Casey) has wanted to be a writer since she was ten years old. Today, she is the author of several mystery series, and a handful of romance novels. She is a former Agatha Award nominee and the recipient of an RT Reviewer’s Choice Award.  SUSPENDERED SENTENCE is her twentieth traditionally-published release. In her free time, Laura enjoys making memories with her family, baking, playing games, and catching up with friends. 
To learn more about Laura and her books, visit her website:
If you’d like more daily interaction, check out her author page on Facebook:
And, on occasion, she Tweets (but not well): @bradfordauthor .

  • Series: An Amish Mystery (Book 4)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley (March 3, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425273024
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425273029

The national bestselling author of Shunned and Dangerous returns to the Amish community of Heavenly, Pennsylvania, where shop owner Claire Weatherly has come to appreciate a simpler, more peaceful way of life. But dark secrets are about to complicate things—and lead to murder…

After the Stoltzfus barn catches fire, Claire is awed by the response of the community. Hundreds of Amish men gather together to raise a new barn for the family in a matter of days. But in the midst of the work, a human skeleton is unearthed. Found with the remains is half of a friendship bracelet last seen on Sadie Lehman, an Amish teen long believed to have left her strict upbringing for the allure of English ways.

Now Detective Jakob Fisher—once a member of the Amish community himself—is determined to solve the young woman’s murder. With Claire’s help, he must dig into the past and bring to light long-buried secrets—secrets that someone is willing to kill to protect…

My take on this book:
I love Amish fiction and when you throw in a good mystery well all I can say is I find myself in reading heaven. When an Amish barn catches on fire it doesn't take long for a barn raising to take place, but while digging around to create a new foundation human bones are found, along with a few pieces of jewelry. Turns out that the remains belong to Sadie Lehman, an Amish girl whom everyone assumed left the area twenty years ago during her Rumspringa. Detective Jakob Fisher, an Amish man turned police detective is determined to find out.

How have I missed this series? This is such a well written Amish mystery that I actually read it in one sitting. In the beginning I felt like the crime was going to be  pretty cut and dried but that wasn't the case at all, instead the author throws in a twist that casts light on an accidental death that might not have been which really revved up the  plot. I loved the town of Heavenly, PA. The name alone made me want to read the story. While Suspendered Sentence is actually the fourth book in An Amish Mystery Series by Laura Bradford she provides enough background information for the characters so that I had no problems slipping right into the story. With that said I want to go back and read the first three books just because this book was an unputdownable read. Fans of Amish fiction are going to love Suspendered Sentence, but honestly anyone who enjoys a good mystery, well written easy to understand and connect with characters along with a budding romance will want to read it as well. On a scale of one to five I would easily give this book a six because it's just that good!

Follow along on the tour:
March 2 – WV Stitcher – Review, Guest Post
March 3 – The Gal in the Blue Mask – Review, Interview
March 4 – Babs Book Bistro – Review
March 5 – Tea and A Book – Review, Guest Post
March 6 – A Chick Who Reads – Review
March 7 – Mystery Playground – Interview
March 8 – Girl Lost In a Book – Review
March 9 – Back Porchervations – Review 


  1. I have read nothing but rave reviews for "Suspendered Sentence"!

    1. Patricia, thanks for dropping by and commenting, Suspendered Sentence is a great read so I can understand why you are reading all of the rave reviews.

  2. I'm really getting hooked on these Amish mysteries---and they are so well written, too.

    1. I totally agree with you Sue, I love a good Amish mystery, especially one that has a few interesting twists. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

    2. I enjoyed your blog and the photo on the carriage.


      PS IF you get a chance, stop by at my blog and say hi. I like to meet new friends.

  3. I love Amish stories and this looks like a great read!

    1. Julie if you enjoy Amish fiction you're in for a real treat with Suspendered Sentence. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

  4. Well I am definitely hooked - great interview, great review, and the excerpt makes me want to read it right now.

    1. Grandma Cootie thanks so much for dropping by and commenting, hope you get a chance to read Suspendered Sentence soon.

  5. Thanks for having me here today, WV Stitcher! And I'm honored by your wonderful review!

    1. Thank you so much Laura for guest posting on WV Stitcher today, and the review hardly does Suspendered Sentence justice.

  6. Laura is one of my favorite authors. I LOVE this series! Can't wait to get my hands on it.

    1. Stacie, thanks for dropping by and commenting. I can understand why Laura is one of your favorite authors, hope you get a chance to read Suspendered Sentence soon.

  7. I love this series, I can't wait to get reacquainted with my favorite characters.

    1. Even though I have only read this one book in the series I can say that I love the story and can't wait to read the first three books. Thanks Debbie for dropping by and commenting.

  8. Love this series and look forward to this book.

    1. Rebecca, Thanks for dropping by and commenting, hope you get to read this fantastic mystery!

  9. This sounds like a great mystery series! Thank you for sharing your thoughts and an awesome post.

    1. Brooke, it's a great book fans of mystery as well as the Amish are going to enjoy it. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.

  10. I haven't read a book in this series, but this sounds wonderful. Now that I know Elizabeth Lynn Casey is Laura Bradford, I know I can't miss.


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