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Blood of the Prodigal: An Amish Country Mystery Series

Plume / 2010 / Paperback

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Product Description

When an Amish or "plain" boy is kidnapped, Bishop Eli Miller reluctantly seeks help from outsiders, the "vain ones" known as English. Pastor Caleb Troyer and Professor Michael Branden, boyhood friends and lifelong residents of the county the Amish and English share, understand better than anyone that the bishop would not have enlisted their help unless it were a matter of gravest concern, and they began searching for the boy under the bishop's mysterious strictures, knowing that the tenuous bonds of trust he has forged with them can easily be broken.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 240
Vendor: Plume
Publication Date: 2010
Dimensions: 8.00 X 5.31 (inches)
ISBN: 0452296463
ISBN-13: 9780452296466
Availability: In Stock
Series: Amish-Country Mystery

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Publisher's Description

Read P. L. Gaus's blogs and other content on the Penguin Community.Book 1 of the Amish-Country Mysteries

In the wooded Amish hill country, a professor at a small college, a local pastor, and the county sheriff are the only ones among the mainstream, or "English," who possess the instincts and skills to work the cases that impact all county residents, no matter their code of conduct or religious creed.

When an Amish boy is kidnapped, a bishop, fearful for the safety of his followers, plunges three outsiders into the traditionally closed society of the "Plain Ones."

Author Bio

Retired college professor P. L. GAUS lives with his wife, Madonna, in Wooster, Ohio.

Editorial Reviews

Praise for P.L. Gaus' Amish-Country Mysteries

"A sensitively observed series."—Marilyn Stasio, New York Times

"Gaus's Amish-Country Mysteries examine the ethical, moral and scriptural nuances of the Amish, and the challenges their community faces co-existing with technology and temptations of the modern world."—Sharon Short, Dayton Daily News (Ohio)

Praise for Clouds without Rain

"Of all the dastardly crimes that might spark a good whodunit, a buggy robbery doesn't seem very promising—unless the author is P. L. Gaus, who writes a discerning series set among the Old Order Amish sects of Holmes County, Ohio... Gaus is a sensitive storyteller who matches his cadences to the measured pace of Amish life, catching the tensions among the village's religious factions."—Marilyn Stasio, New York Times

Praise for Cast a Blue Shadow

"An interesting who-dunit read, keeping me guessing in addition to providing insight into a unique way of life... This insightful novel will satisfy your hunger for a good murder mystery while it subtly educates you on the beliefs and values of a facet of society most know little about."—Bonnie Papenfuss, The Sahuarita Sun (Arizona)

Praise for Harmless as Doves

"For more than a decade, P. L. Gaus has been writing quietly spellbinding mysteries about one such group, the conservative Old Order Amish of Holmes County, Ohio... [A] sensitive account of the impact on this community when outsiders (that is, the cops) descend to deal with an Amish youth who has confessed to the murder of his fiancee's older, richer and very persistent admirer."—Marilyn Stasio, New York Times

"Gaus spins a fine mystery with a strong background of Amish faith and plenty of detail on the difficulties the Amish face in the modern age."—Michele Leber, Booklist

"What makes this book stand out as exceptional is the method in which Gaus describes events. There is intrigue, tenderness, religion, and much conflict... Blending of old-world culture with modern detective work makes this continuation of the same characters in key roles with different murders a true mystery series... If you like good mysteries, without salacious sex or mayhem, and adash of religion mixed in, you will want to read this book... A four star book and is highly recommended."—Clark Isaacs, Reviewer's Bookwatch

Praise for The Names of Our Tears

"Series regulars Professor Michael Branden, in Pinecraft, and Pastor Cal Troyer provide comfort and continuity in this eighth Amish-country mystery. Loose ends in the murder case lend realism and augur well for the next installment."—Michele Leber, Booklist

Praise for Separate from the World

"With each new mystery, P. L. Gaus treats us to yet another view of life among the Old Order Amish in Wayne County, Ohio... [H]e has great admiration for the Amish themselves, writing with quiet gravity about aspects of their lives rarely shown to strangers."—Marilyn Stasio, New York Times

"The latest in this too-little-known series again combines a fascinating, realistic look at an Amish community in Ohio with a gently satiric take on academic life."—Barbara Bibel, Booklist

Product Reviews

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Displaying items 1-5 of 6
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  1. Wasola, Mo
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Ranson, Murder, Kidnapping, and suspense
    February 23, 2013
    Jane Squires
    Wasola, Mo
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Any book you cannot lay down deservea a rating of 5. I thought this book was going one way showing a dark side of the Amish. But it didn't. You like murder, suspense, mystery, then you will want to read this book.

    This book covers murder of an Amish person who has left the community. Like all parents, Eli, the Bishop, wants his son to return to the Community and prays he does. The grandson - son of Jonah - has been living with his grandfather. But one day the grandson is kidnapped and there is more to the story than you suspect at first. I won't spoil it by giving any away.

    Jonah has been gone 10 years. He is returning home when he is murdered. The investigation will keep you on your seats. Not what you think. Way more.

    Ranson, kidnapping, murder, and investigation will keep you reading way into the night. The person who done the murder will be a mystery until clear toward the end. Great read.
  2. Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    May 2, 2012
    alwaysreading
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I don't normally read books based in the Amish community, however when someone asked me to read this I was amazed. It's not your usual Amish book. I thought the characters were very well written and the plot was so well done that it caught me off guard when the end was revealed. A very good book. I can't wait to read the rest.
  3. Atlanta
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Not your Typical Amish Story! Liked That!
    June 8, 2011
    Nora Finding Hope
    Atlanta
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    The book world is inundated with Amish stories galore, but this book stood out to me for a couple of reasons. One the cover and title caught my attention and the credentials of the author. I was thankful to receive a review copy of a book that captured my attention and made me want to read what was inside. This is not your typical Amish story and I liked that!

    "Say little..Listen A lot!" These are the simple watch words that Pastor Caleb and Professor Michael Branden stand by in dealing with the Amish community.

    Bishop Eli Miller reluctantly seeks the help of an outsider when tragedy strikes. The Bishop must trust an outsider to discover the whereabouts of his teenage grandson. Pastor Caleb Troyer and Professor Michael Brayden, are boyhood friends who've helped the Amish community before. They both understand their ways, how private a people they are, and they both know the Bishop. Both Caleb and Micahel realize the situation must be serious for the Bishop to seek their help.

    I liked how the books point of view is from an outsider looking into the Amish community. The reader gets a peek into the Amish Community world, that's all. The author never takes you fully inside. I liked that.

    This author lets the reader get to know Pastor Caleb and Professor Michael very well. They are a great team who respect the Amish community and earnestly want to help the Bishop find Josh. This is a different spin on a who-done-it kind of story. I didn't figure out who did it until the author revealed it to the reader. This was an intriguing, fun, heart-felt story I really enjoyed. This is the first book I've read by this author and it definitely won't be the last.

    Nora St.Laurent

    The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org

    Finding Hope Through Fiction www.psalm516.blogspot.com
  4. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    Latest in Amish Country mystery series
    April 14, 2011
    Christy Lockstein
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Blood of the Prodigal by P.L. Gaus is the latest book in the Amish Country mystery series featuring Professor Michael Branden, Pastor Cal Troyer and Sheriff Bruce Robertson. These three childhood friends have remained close in their lives in Millersburg, Ohio, within Amish country. They have used their friendship and various skills in the past to solve mysteries within the area, but they area all tested to their limits when Bishop Eli Miller requests that Cal and Branden locate his grandson Jeremiah who has been taken away by his father Jonah who was put under the ban over ten years ago. The bishop puts several restrictions on their investigation, especially that they not include the police in their search. But when Jonah turns up dead, the investigation is stopped dead, yet Bishop Miller wants them to continue to search for Jeremiah, again without the police. This nearly impossible task is hindered further by the lack of cooperation from the Amish community. Gaus has written a tightly paced mystery that keeps both the readers and the characters guessing. He uses the seclusion of the Amish to good effect, giving their reaction to an FBI agent a touch of humor while keeping it very real. Branden, Cal, and Robertson are all very real characters with fully fleshed personalities and backgrounds. I wish that I had read the previous books in the series, not because they are necessary to enjoy Blood of the Prodigal, but because I want to know the characters better. When the truth behind the mystery is finally exposed, it reveals a terrible tragedy that made my heart ache. This is a terrific series I fully intend to revisit soon.
  5. Upstate SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    March 7, 2011
    Ruth
    Upstate SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    I am reading the whole series - in order. This series,

    I am at book three, I like.

    (Most of the current crop of supposedly Amish stories are not at all appealing. They seem somewhat fake and produced 'on demand' like a fad? I have started and just given up on some titles.)

    The story about this missing boy had me guessing to the - unsuspected - end. I would not recommend starting it without having sufficient time to finish, unless you don't mind the interruption. I stayed up way too late to finish each of the first two books.
Displaying items 1-5 of 6
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