This is a fun whodunit mystery taking place in the Amish town of Shipshewana. After Callie's aunt passes, she arrives from Texas with the intent of selling her aunt's quilt shop. After a little coaxing the Amish ladies that provided quilts for the shop, convince her to re-open the now forlorn looking shop. Deborah's family comes to help Callie restore the shop and clean the grounds.
Deborah, one of the Amish women quilters and Callie work together to sell some of the quilts on EBay. The editor of the local newspaper finds this as a good story to sell a few more of his papers and embellishes the story with incorrect information which gives Callie a bad start in her new business.
Callie becomes friends with the Amish women and gains their trust.
The editor is found dead in his office and Callie finds him and somehow becomes entangled legally with this apparent crime. More incidents happen in town and the police are looking to capture the person responsible. Callie and Deborah play detectives, plotting together to figure out how to find the person responsible for the crimes and find themselves in a scary situation.
The story is one of trust and friendship among women of different backgrounds and how they can bond together and work together even though they have many differences. I enjoyed the story very much and it was a fun read
Falling To Pieces by Vannetta Chapman, A Shipshewana Amish Mystery Series, book 1*****
by Vannetta Chapman
Callie Harper is in Shipshewana staying in her Aunt Daisy's apartment above the Daisy's Quilt Shop her aunt owned and loved. Callie had not seen her aunt in years but when she unexpectedly dies Callie finds she has inherited the shop. Since she doesn't know anything about running a quilt shop, she plans to sell it as quickly as possible and return to Texas. She also inherited Max, Aunt Daisy's Labrador. When Callie takes Max out to do his "morning business", she sees an Amish women getting out of a buggy parked by the shop. The woman approaches Callie with her arms full of beautiful quilts and introduces herself. She learns that Deborah Yoder was not only a friend of her aunt's but brought Amish quilts for her to sell. Callie informs Deborah that she plans to sell the shop. Callie soon learns she may sell the quilt shop quicker if she would re-open it. With Deborah and her family's help, along with Melinda and Esther, two Amish women who sew with Deborah, the shop is soon clean, orderly and ready to open again.
One day Deborah comes into the shop and shows Callie an article in the Shipshewana Gazette about Daisy's Quilt Shop's new owner, Callie Harper. The article was written by the editor, Mr. Steakhorn and was anything but truthfulâ€”"New Shop Owner Robs Amish". Barely containing her anger she storms out to see the editor. But Mr. Steakhorn has left for the day so Callie must wait til the next day to confront him and demand a retraction to the article. She doesn't know that it is Mr. Steakhorn's policy to never retract an article. Her first meeting with him does not go well. Later while waiting for her usual to-go order at the deli she hears Mr. Steakhorn's name called for his order. They end up arguing and Callie says he will regret making her an enemy. That same night Mr. Steakhorn is found dead in his office byâ€”Callie. When it is determined that it was not a heart attack but murder, Callie is top on the list of suspects.
After the murder of Mr. Steakhorn someone looks through his office apparently looking for something. Other shops are broken into and searched, even injuring the deli's owner. Callie's shop is broken into and Max is shot. Callie and her new Amish friends decide to find who is responsible for the murder and break-ins. They enlist the help of the new Gazette owner, Mr. Trent McCallister and some of the police officers offer to assist too. They come up with a plan to trap the burglaries/murderer.
I love the way Vannetta weaves a story stitching the threads of the characters lives together to make a lovely quilt of friendship along with: hope, forgiveness, family, love and faith. Added to this is a mystery that keeps you guessing to the end. I am looking forward to reading book 2 in the series:
~I received a copy of the book from the author for my review~
When I began reading this story, I wasn't sure if I would enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed reading Vannetta's other series. One of my very favorite books is Vanetta's first novel about the Amish, A Simple Amish Christmas.
No, it wasn't really anything like A Simple Amish Christmas, but the interaction between Callie Harper and the Amish women she befriends â€” Deborah, Esther and Melinda, is entertaining and wholesome.
If I were Callie, I would never have the nerve to do some of the things she does_ yet it is very believable. Getting involved in the lives of her friends is just what she needs.
Most series are written so that you can pick up any of the books and catch up easily with what's happened before. You can probably do this with the Shipshewana Amish Mystery series, but you will miss so much if you do. Get all three books in the series and begin at book one - Falling to Pieces. You'll be glad you did.
Falling to Pieces is the first book in the Shipshewana Amish Mystery series. I was delighted by its unique storyline and loved the suspense!
Vannetta Chapman has written an Amish mystery that will keep you guessing until the very end. With well-developed characters, both Amish and English, and a great plot, Falling to Pieces is sure to entertain. I enjoyed this fresh, engaging story and look forward to reading the next book in the series, A Perfect Square!