Friday, March 7, 2014

Shunned & Dangerous by Laura Bradford: Guest Author/Giveaway

Shunned and Dangerous (Amish Mystery Series #3)

When Simple Isn’t Simple At All
By Laura Bradford

Looking back through my childhood, I guess it’s not really a surprise that I’ve gravitated towards the Amish with my mystery writing. After all, I was always fascinated with the simpler lifestyle of Laura Ingalls Wilder as depicted in her books and by the TV show based on her life. 

I suppose, in many ways, it’s that same pull toward simplicity that still has me carrying around a flip phone and using an old fashioned paper planner to keep track of my appointments and such. Simple is, for lack of a better description, less complicated.

Or, at least that’s what I thought.

Now, with three books under my belt in my Amish Mysteries, I’ve come to realize that “simple living” doesn’t always equate to “less problems.” In fact, in some ways, it causes more. 

When I was creating the town of Heavenly, Pennsylvania as the backdrop for this series, I knew I wanted some characters who were Amish, and some who were English. By doing so, the reader could learn about the Amish along with the English characters.

What I didn’t expect, though, was the hold one particular character—the one who straddles both worlds, equally—would start to have on me as I progressed through the books.

Detective Jakob Fisher loves his job. He loves knowing that he can rid the streets of bad guys by keeping his eyes and ears open for trouble. The problem is, he’s working in Heavenly now. And in order to do his job in Heavenly, he has to interact with people who are bound and determined to treat him as if he doesn’t exist.

Because, to them, he doesn’t.

That’s what happens, though, when you’re raised Amish and choose to leave after baptism.

Had Jakob decided to pursue police work before baptism, he could have maintained a relationship with his parents and siblings until his death. But since he waited to make that choice until after, he’s lost everything.

His parents…

His beloved sister, Martha, and the nieces and nephews her marriage has provided…

His adopted brother, Isaac…

And, essentially, anyone and everyone who knew the person he was for the first half of his life.

Claire, my main character, has questioned his reasons for coming back to a place where people shun him. Even Diane, Claire’s aunt, has wondered the same thing, on occasion. But for Jakob, the reason for his return to Heavenly is simple: just because logic and experience tell him things will never change, doesn’t mean hope concurs.

Maybe, if he walks past Heavenly Treasures—Claire’s gift shop—at the same time his niece Esther is getting off work, he might be on the receiving end of a faint nod of acknowledgement or even a shy smile.

Maybe, if he apprehends a criminal wreaking havoc on his former Amish friends, they’ll realize his leaving wasn’t such a bad idea.

And, maybe, just maybe, when something goes wrong and he steps in to help, they’ll whisper a thank you in his direction—two simple words to you or me, but two more than anyone from his childhood has uttered in his direction in seventeen years.

Seventeen years.

It’s tragic, really. And ripe with all sorts of possibilities that make me giddy as a writer!

So come on, explore with me...

SHUNNED AND DANGEROUS—the third book in my Amish Mysteries—will release March 4th. In this story, Jakob’s decision to return to Heavenly is sorely tested when a murder in town brings him face to face with a suspect who hasn’t spoken to him in seventeen years. The fact that it’s his father only makes it worse.


Laura Bradford is the national best-selling author of the Amish Mysteries (Berkley Prime Crime). The third title in the series—SHUNNED AND DANGEROUS—is available March 4th. To learn more about Laura and the Amish Mysteries, visit her website:, “like” her page on Facebook, or follow her on Twitter @Bradfordauthor.

Giveaway: Leave a comment (don't forget your email address!) by noon EST on March 14, and you will be entered to win a copy of Shunned and Dangerous. U.S. entries only.


Kaye Killgore said...

I really like this series, and have learned a lot about the Amish.

Judy said...

Oh this is going to be a good read! I can't wait to see what happens between Jakob and his father!

Would love to win a copy!

Judy B

Judy said...

Forgot my email address: judyjohn2004(at)yahoo(dot)com

Unknown said...

The world of the Amish has always fascinated me; this book sounds compelling. michelle_willms at yahoo dot com.

holdenj said...

I really like series and have been looking forward to the next installment. Great post by Laura, I liked her comments about how the simple life doesn't equate to simple problems.
Thanks for the chance to win!

Karen B said...

I haven't read any of this series but the reviews for the latest book have been terrific! I've added the series to my wish list.

Unknown said...

It really it a fascinating idea. You can't help but feel for the poor detective.

Rita Wray said...

I'm looking forward to reading the book.


Unknown said...

I've read the first two books in this series and they were fantastic. Would love to win this book. I know it's a great book. Thank you for the chance to win this book.


NoraA said...

I love Laura Bradford's writing and I'd love to win this book.


Unknown said...

Love cozies and Amish. Would love to win this book!!

Unknown said...

Ah yes--the don't forget to leave your e mail passed me by in the excitement of this give away---my e mail is:

Michelle F. said...

Sounds like a good book. I also like her Elizabeth Lynn Casey sewing circle series.


Sue said...

I love these Amish cozies---they are such a nice combo of current and old fashioned.

Kimberlee said...

One of my favorites series. Would love to win this one.


Katreader said...

I live not too far from a few Amish communities and enjoy reading and learning about them.

Anita Yancey said...

I have never read an Amish mystery, but this one sounds so good and I would love to read it. It has some great characters. Thanks for having the giveaway.


Carol M said...

I've never read an Amish mystery. I would love to start with this one! It sounds like a story I would enjoy.
mittens0831 at aol dot com

Quinn and Angel brandi said...

Mommy loves Amish stories! This would make a wonderful belated birthday pressie for Mommy!