Murder Simply Brewed (Amish Village Mystery Series #1)

Murder Simply Brewed (Amish Village Mystery Series #1)

by Vannetta Chapman
4.7 33

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Overview

Murder Simply Brewed (Amish Village Mystery Series #1) by Vannetta Chapman

When the coffee shop manager is murdered in Middlebury’s Amish Artisan Village, two women from different walks of life must join together to solve the mystery.

Spring has arrived in Middlebury, Indiana, and Amber Wright is optimistic about the growing profit from her collection of Amish shops—until she receives a call that Ethan Gray is dead. Hurrying over to A Simple Blend, she finds a solitary hole in the front window and the store manager lying next to the espresso machine, dead from an apparent heart attack. All the money is still in his register.

When Amber hires a young Amish woman, Hannah Troyer, to take over the shop’s duties, the two women become fast friends—as well as amateur sleuths. The police believe Gray’s death is a by-product of vandalism, but Amber and Hannah aren't convinced.

Clues that don't add up, a neighbor who is pulled into the midst of the investigation, a town with secrets to hide, and a blossoming romance—all will combine to push Amber and Hannah into unfamiliar roles in order to reveal answers to the mysteries around them.

"Chapman's latest is a mix of mystery and romance with vivid characters, a realistic setting and themes of loss, trust and love." — Romantic Times, four-star review

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780310326168
Publisher: Zondervan
Publication date: 03/25/2014
Series: Amish Village Mystery Series , #1
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 172,057
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Vannetta Chapman writes inspirational fiction full of grace. She is the author of sixteen novels, including the Pebble Creek Amish series, The Shipshewana Amish Mystery series, and Anna’s Healing, a 2016 Christy Award finalist. Vannetta is a Carol award winner and has also received more than two dozen awards from Romance Writers of America chapter groups. She was a teacher for fifteen years and currently resides in the Texas hill country. Visit Vannetta online: VannettaChapman.com, Twitter: @VannettaChapman, Facebook: VannettaChapmanBooks.

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Murder Simply Brewed 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
GingerS219 More than 1 year ago
This was a great romantic suspense. Vannetta Chapman outdid herself by giving us not one but two romances. I enjoyed reading about Amber and Hannah as they grow in their unusual friendship, as they solve the Village mystery, and as they each fall in love (not with each other LOL). You don't have to be a coffee drinker to enjoy the book. :)
dgottreu More than 1 year ago
Murder Simply Brewed by Vannetta Chapman is a most enjoyable Amish story. Amber Wright is in charge of the Amish Artisan Village in Middlebury, Indiana, and is having a great day until she learns that one of the shop owners has been found dead. Hannah Troyer, a young Amish employee, finds Ethan Gray the owner of A simple Blend on the floor near the espresso machine and at first it appears that he died of a heart attack. Amber hires Hannah to take over the running of the coffee shop and the two become good friends while trying to solve the mystery of Ethan’s death for they are convinced that he was murdered. Amber and Hannah face several dangerous situations for someone does not want them to solve the mystery. Tate Bowman who owns the property next to the Village gets involved in trying to solve the mystery and he also finds himself drawn to Amber. Hannah is also learning that her friend Jesse Miler has feelings for her that are more than friendship. The author did an excellent job in the development of all parts of the story. One part that I personally did not like was when the boa constrictor came into the story for I have a great fear of snakes and that part of the story gave me the heebie jeebies. The way the Amish and Englischers worked together in this story was extremely well written and was a joy to read. Every character was very believable and every one of them came to life on the pages of the book. Scenes came to life and I could picture myself working right along with Amber and Hannah to solve the mystery of Ethan’s death. There were several twists and turns in the story and each one just added to my enjoyment of and interest in the story. I especially liked the way that God’s grace was evident throughout the entire story. This book has it all—Amish and Englischers working together, a murder mystery, and romance. I highly recommend this book to all lovers of Amish fiction for this story is an exceptionally good one. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Zondervan via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to give a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
KayMKM More than 1 year ago
Very good cozy mystery with both “Englisch” and Amish characters. The setting is wonderful—a pleasant village constructed for the benefit of both locals and tourists in Middlebury, Indiana. The Amish Village includes a conference center, restaurant and several shops built adjacent to a pond on lovely grounds. Although romance is not the main focus of the novel, a couple of budding romances are featured—one “Englisch” and one Amish. This novel offers an interesting cast of characters and is very entertaining. If you like cozy mysteries, I think you will enjoy this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book! Loved Hannah & Amber's characters - along with Tate, whom at first, I wasn't too sure of (he just seemed cranky). The story was great - I didn't have a sure idea of who it was until closer to the end which I liked, I'd had suspicions, but they were wrong ;) Just a great book - I loved the different dynamics with the characters, and seeing them fall in love, while trying to figure out whodunit. Just a great book. Loved it Vannetta! I'm excited to read the next one!
Shay14 More than 1 year ago
I have been reading reviews on these books since they started coming out last year and have been eager to read them. I finally broke down and bought this book and I'm so glad I did! It was certainly worth the money. This was my first book by Vannetta Chapman, so aside from the reviews I'd read, I didn't know what to expect. While this wasn't a fast paced, action packed novel, I didn't expect it to be. It moved along at just the right speed for the subject. The characters were well written and developed. I could easily relate to their feelings and emotions throughout the story. Putting the pieces of the puzzle together with them was exciting. I enjoyed reading about Hannah and Jesse. Hannah's sweet innocence and adolescent confusion made for an interesting character. Amber is a great manager. She is kind, compassionate, organized, and caring. Her relationship with Tate was swift and sweet. I didn't like Tate at the beginning of the story, but quickly warmed up to him as his character developed. The message of the story is about learning to be comfortable in the situations we find ourselves in. Life isn't always easy. Sometimes we stop and question why God put us here. In the words of Hannah's Mamm, "Sometimes Gotte (God) has a way of putting us in situations where we're uncomfortable." He does it for our own good and growth. Overall, this was an exciting story and I look forward to reading more in the Amish Village Mystery Series. 
VicG More than 1 year ago
Vannetta Chapman in her new book, “Murder Simply Brewed” Book One in the Amish Village Mystery series published by Zondervan introduces us to Amber Wright and Hannah Troyer. From the back cover: When the coffee shop manager is murdered in Middlebury’s Amish Artisan Village, two women from different walks of life must join together to solve the mystery. Spring has arrived in Middlebury, Indiana, and Amber Wright is optimistic about the growing profit from her collection of Amish shops—until she receives a call that Ethan Gray is dead. Hurrying over to A Simple Blend, she finds a solitary hole in the front window and the store manager lying next to the espresso machine, dead from an apparent heart attack. All the money is still in his register. When Amber hires a young Amish woman, Hannah Troyer, to take over the shop’s duties, the two women become fast friends—as well as amateur sleuths. The police believe Gray’s death is a by-product of vandalism, but Amber and Hannah aren’t convinced. Clues that don’t add up, a neighbor who is pulled into the midst of the investigation, a town with secrets to hide, and a blossoming romance—all will combine to push Amber and Hannah into unfamiliar roles in order to reveal answers to the mysteries around them. Now this is what a murder mystery is all about. First we have Amber Wright, an English woman, who has some Amish Village shops one of which is A Simple Blend, a coffee shop. Then we have Hannah Troyer, who is Amish, that Amber hired to take over A Simply Blend after the death of Ethan. Nobody liked Ethan and when these two women set out to find his murderer they have a huge mystery with a large set of suspects with very little to go on. This is going to keep you flipping pages as you get involved with mystery hunters and a vandal. Ms. Chapman has done an outstanding job in giving us a first class mystery. Amber and Hannah are really great characters that we fall in love with and feel as though they are friends that we do not want to leave when the book is finished. The good news is Ms. Chapman has written a second book in this series so we can reunite with them soon. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Zondervan for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
TheAvidReader_KA More than 1 year ago
Murder Simply Brewed by Vannetta Chapman is a delightful Amish cozy mystery. It is the first book in the Amish Village Mystery series. Amber Wright is the manager of the Amish Artisan Village in Middlebury, Indiana. She lives in a Dawdy Haus (a small house for grandparents or that the parents move into when they pass the property/house on to a son or daughter) on the property with her cat, Leo. At the beginning of a new day she gets a call that Ethan Gray, manager of A Simple Blend, has been found dead in the shop. The windows were also shot with a BB gun. It is ruled a heart attack, but Amber has a feeling that there is more to it than meets the eye! She receives a call at the end of the day of a threatening message left on a trail near the property line. Tate Bowman, who owns a farm adjacent to the Amish Artisan Village, spotted the message. It is written in red paint. Unfortunately, this is just the beginning. Hannah Troyer is twenty-two and has been working at Quilting Bee. Amber asks her to take over A Simple Blend. Amber and Hannah start talking about Ethan’s death and the damage being done around The Village. Hannah talks things over with her friend, Jesse Miller. Jesse works on the grounds crew in The Village. They keep looking for clues to help solve the crimes. After a threat at Amber’s home, Tate starts keeping a closer eye. Amber and Tate also get to know each other better. Tate lost his wife four years ago and has never been a fan of The Village. But, as he gets to know Amber, he sees things a little differently. Tate, Amber, Hannah, and Jesse work to see who is behind the threats and damage to The Village. Amber also thinks that Ethan was murdered and hopes to find proof. I give Murder Simply Brewed 5 out of 5 stars. Enjoyable and relatable characters, interesting setting, well-written, and an entertaining mystery. I have wanted to read this book since it came out, but I have not had the opportunity. I finally pushed it to the top of my list and I am very glad. I cannot wait to read the next book in this engaging series.
Heidi_Reads More than 1 year ago
This was a good book. I liked the characters. I liked the setting. The mystery was mysterious. The drawback for me was that the pacing was just so slow. There doesn't seem to be any urgency to the investigation which I'm not used to in a murder mystery. Each clue that moved the story forward came between leisurely description and details from three different points of view- Amber's, Hannah's, and the neighboring farmer Tate. The three perspectives do give variety to the story and show how the Amish and English communities interact and form friendships. The romance between Amber and Tate is especially enjoyable to see develop.
Gee0415 More than 1 year ago
This is the very first book I have read of Vannetta Chapman's. It is also the very first Amish story I have read along with it being a mystery  in the Christian genre. A Village that seems to run smoothly until there is a death. Is it a natural cause death or is it a murder?  This story is full of twist and turns and love along with having faith and trust in God. Very Suspenseful!
wfnren More than 1 year ago
Good mystery by Vannetta Chapman  --   Vannetta did a good job on this mystery and I like that she has the English and Amish working together. I enjoy a mystery with sleuthing by amateurs, it seems they can dig up better clues than the authorities and I really enjoy it when they prove the experienced authorities wrong. This is the first in the series, I'm already reading the second, "Murder Tightly Knit" and will be watching for the third, "Murder Freshly Baked" to come out in June of 2015. This is looking like it will be a good series for Amish or mystery/cozy mystery book lovers. I received this as an e-book from Net Galley with an agreement to give an honest review. The review above is my honest opinion of this book.
DJMynatt More than 1 year ago
Wow! It began so quietly… for a moment or two I thought it might not be as exciting and “mysterious” as Vannetta’s Shipshewana Amish Mystery series… au contraire! I have never, to my knowledge, finished a book, only to pick it up again almost immediately to read through again, but that is exactly what I did! Murder Simply Brewed proved nearly impossible to put down… I can’t remember the last time I felt so anxious… so nervous… waiting for the killer to make their move! The characters are amazing! Vannetta has captured so many different personalities. Putting them together to solve the mystery works perfectly. I love her idea of adding the “mystery package”. I laughed and laughed over the idea! Honestly, I cannot say enough about how much I love Vannetta’s writing… I have quickly learned that Vannetta’s books all belong on my “top shelf”. A Simple Amish Christmas, the first Vannetta Chapman book is my favorite was my favorite since the day I read it… until now. Murder Simply Brewed has stolen 1st place! Pick up your own copy today… don’t miss this fantastic read!
PianoLady831 More than 1 year ago
Murder Simply Brewed is the most delightful story - a perfect blend of Amish fiction, cozy mystery, and romance that entertains and inspires. Vannetta's prose is tight, with every word moving the story along. A "comfort read" for me on the one hand as I enjoyed its characters and setting, I was still held in its grip, eager to see how the mystery element would be resolved.  The charming setting - an Amish Artisan Village in Middlebury, Indiana - is a place every reader will surely want to visit. Located on seventy acres, it consists of an inn, conference center, restaurant, bakery, and six artisan shops. Be sure to visit Vannetta's Pinterest board to get a feel for the village and surrounding area. I especially appreciated the connection between two couples - one young and Amish, one older and Englisch - and the growing friendship between Amber and Hannah as well. Amber had been the village manager for 22 years, and was convinced that it was too late for God to satisfy her dream of marriage. Tate, a farmer in his early 50s, had a no-nonsense way about him and liked the quiet life. An unlikely pairing like this makes for great storytelling, and I loved the scene where Amber and Tate are trying to get his donkeys, Velvet and Trixie, out of the rain. Hannah is the sweetest young Amish girl who struggles with vanity, but in an innocent way. The friendship between Amber and Hannah may have started because of Hannah's natural investigative skills - she was a good listener, noticed things, and people trusted her - but it quickly grew into much more. Hannah reflects that while Amish communities remain separate in some cases, "In Middlebury, it seems that Gotte has woven our lives together in some areas, especially at work. . . . What if we're supposed to look out for one another?" Hannah's neighbor, Jesse, is another delightful character, and I look forward to seeing the relationship between these two grow. I am a huge fan of cozy mysteries and I can say that Vannetta excels in this area. It is so refreshing to read a mystery that is well plotted and thought out, populated with interesting suspects, and with spiritual overtones. Especially moving is the Amish view of death, reflected in Minerva's words to Hannah:  "Often a death is just the end of one's completed life. I've seen many people struggle with that truth, because they weren't ready to be without their loved one. . . . We all must accept how temporary this life is, which is sometimes a painful idea." Spiritual values shine in the way Amber and Hannah become a friend to the victim, even in death, and later to one who would do harm. Vannetta Chapman is an author that I never fail to enjoy, and I highly recommend Murder Simply Brewed. 5-star rating in comparison to other Amish fiction. Thank you to Vannetta  Chapman for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Murder Simply Brewed by Vannetta Chapman is a murder, mystery novel set in the Indiana where the Amish meet the English.  Amber, an "Englischer", is the manager of a cute little "resort" in the county called, the Amish Artisan Village.  The Village has a few Amish shops as well as a hotel, restaurant and conference center.  The Village seems like the perfect, peaceful retreat until Ethan Gray, one of the shop owners, is found dead in his coffee shop.  The police feel that his death was from a heart attack, but Amber feels differently.  Amber has one of the Amish girls who works in the quilt shop, Hannah, take over the coffee shop after Ethan's death, and both women begin to think that Ethan's death was not of natural causes, but rather that he was murdered. After Ethan's death, other strange things start happening around the Village... and each strange occurrence seems to have a verse from Daniel left at the scene.  Amber and Hannah start trying to put together the clues to figure out who had it out for Ethan, even if the police don't believe them.  Amber has her suspicions about Ethan's wife, but eventually dismisses them after new, more promising suspects come out.  Using their resources in the English and the Amish community, Amber and Hannah manage to solve the mystery of how Ethan died and they bring a killer to justice. I hadn't read a book like this in a long time and wasn't sure how I was going to feel about it.  I ended up really enjoying the book and it was a very quick read.  It was one of those books that once I started reading it I didn't want to put it down.  I really liked the way that Chapman combined the English and the Amish way of life to give her readers a good look into how I would imagine life works when the Amish and English try to mix.  Although this book was set in Indiana, I found myself imaging that this is how life is like in Lancaster, PA (near where I live) and it has given me a new appreciation for the Amish lifestyle.  I do wish that I had saved this book to read on our beach weekend getaway because I do think that it is a perfect beach read!  I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a quick read that involves murder, mystery and intrigue with a little bit of religion mixed in.
sunshineJB More than 1 year ago
Mystery, Murder, Romance and Faith! This is one of the best mystery books that I have read.  Once again author Vannetta Chapman holds us spellbound.  What a great read!  I have read every book by this author.  Each one gets better and better.  I am a huge fan of this author and have had the pleasure of meeting her in person twice.   Are you up to some heart racing, terrifying scenes that keep the pages turning?   Are you up for some oh so special romantic moments?  How about a few smiles?   Perhaps some charming characters?  Then this book is for you!  I most certainly recommend it. Come along now to Middlebury, Indiana and meet Amber Wright, Hannah Troyer, Ethan Gray, Tate Bowman, and Jesse Miller to name a few.  Some of these characters will be ones that you will simply love, others not so much. I can’t wait to read book two in this series!  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
jacksonmomLV More than 1 year ago
I absolutely LOVED Vannetta Chapman's mysteries set in Shipshewana, Indiana. In fact, I'm still hoping she'll write us another book starring Callie, Deborah, Shane and company. But now it's time to move a few miles to Middlebury...will there be the same chemistry in a new place with new faces? After reading "Murder Simply Brewed," I think the answer is a definite "Ya." Without giving away the plot or ending, I feel this novel's strengths are the growing love between old neighbors and new friends, Amber and Tate. Both are extremely loyal persons - Amber to her job running the Amish Artisan Village, and Tate to the memory of his late wife, Peggy. Can they open their hearts and risk a new commitment? These characters really won my interest, and I found myself truly caring for their future friendship together. And as in her previous series, Chapman specializes in Amish and Englisch working together. The friendship between young Hannah and seasoned Amber not only solves a mystery here, but promises to grow in the series ahead. I recommend this mystery to everyone familiar with Chapman's gripping style, and anyone who wants to broaden their concept of Amish fiction. A great read!
SunnieReviews More than 1 year ago
Vannetta Chapman has authored a great book for those who enjoy and love this genre. And it mixes it up a bit with Amish and "Englisch" together side by side working to resolve the crime. This book takes place in the Amish community of Middlebury, Indiana. The setting is the Amish artisan village shop area where Amish items are sold. Some of the workers are Amish and others are not. Hannah, an Amish girl working in a quilt shop arrives at work and notices the normal smells permeating from the coffee shop next door were not there. She wonders why the difference and discovers that the proprietor, Ethan Gray had arrived to work that day and appears to have died in the coffee shop. Hannah calls the manager of the Amish shops, Amber, and it would appear through police reports that a heart attack caused by vandalism would be the cause of death for Ethan Gray. However, a continuing series of events occur which rule out death through health causes. As the story progresses, new characters come into play which could be the possible perpetrators of the death of Ethan and the vandalism. Hannah is asked by Amber to take over the work at the coffee shop and Hannah is concerned because she has never done this type of work. She quickly catches on and the coffee shop begins to come back to life. As the vandalism in the Amish artisan village continues there is no doubt that Ethan was murdered and Hannah and Amber combine efforts to find the answers to the mysterious happenings. I love a good mystery and that it was! I was taken in immediately into the lives of the characters of the book and enjoyed the sparks of romance that brought people's lives together in the book, as well. A very well-written and enjoyable book. And if you love a mystery, you will love Murder Simply Brewed!
ConR More than 1 year ago
Vannetta Chapman is one of my favorite authors, and her newest, "Murder Simply Brewed" did not disappoint. I always appreciate how Vannetta doesn't place her Amish characters into the "normal" circumstances as we readers imagine that genre. Instead, her stories are contemporary and vibrant, combining suspense, love, Amish and so much more into a world that just sucks you into the midst of all that is happening. In "Brewed", we meet Hannah and Jesse, and Amber and Tate, along with several other people that live near an "Amish Artisan Village". If you've been in any commercial Amish area, you can just picture the setting and how it mixes real and imaginary scenarios into a tourist attraction that benefits the Amish and the tourist. I recommend the book to any and all who enjoy a "clean" read with some intrigue!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love Amish fiction although most of the Amish books I read are romance. I love the way the author combined the authentic details of Amish life as part of a mystery. The characters are realistic and believable and I found myself really enjoying the way they interacted.  Adding the mysterious Old Testament clues into the story really had me trying to figure out who was behind the shop keeper’s death. It wasn’t easy to figure out if the person was Amish or English.  If you enjoy Amish fiction or mysteries, I definitely recommend you read Murder Simply Brewed. It’s a fun read that keeps you hooked till the end. I received a copy of this book for my honest review.
mysterybook_nerd98 More than 1 year ago
I thought the mystery started off a little slow but picked up fairly quickly. I'm a Christian and enjoy Christian fiction but felt the book got a little too preachy at times but I wasn't offended. Overall it's a good debut novel. The setting, mystery, and characters were all interesting. I plan on reading more from this author. * I received a complimentary copy from the publisher via BookLook in exchange for an honest review.
PTucker More than 1 year ago
I've said it before, and I'll say it again...I love Vannetta Chapman's writing style! Murder Simply Brewed, first in an Amish Village Mystery series, is well-written, interesting reading. The characters are realistic and I found it hard to put the book down. Amber Wright manages the Amish Artisan Village. One of her store managers is found dead and the police think it's natural causes, a heart attack. Amber has doubts, especially when other things start happening. Amber asks Hannah Troyer, an Amish woman, to take over the dead man's shop. They both have doubts about what happened and, as things progress, decide to work together to solve the mystery. Amber's neighbor, Tate, becomes involved in the investigation, and protecting Amber, as they both think about where their lives are headed and what their future holds. Hannah's friend, Jesse, becomes more important, in her life, as the mystery unravels...young love. Vannetta keeps things moving, as the mystery progresses, right up to the end. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to book two!
CaraPutman More than 1 year ago
I enjoy Vannetta Chapman's Amish based mysteries in large part because the Amish and English characters interact in real and dynamic ways. This book is no exception. A man dies while at work in an Amish village/resort. At first nobody suspects anything, but as other strange things begin to occur at this getaway, the manager and the Amish employee who found the body begin to wonder if more could be at stake. There is more than the mystery though, as one couple experiences romance and another begins to explore what could be. The characters are enjoyable, the interactions real, and the mystery kept me guessing for quite a bit of the book. All in all a great read for those who love a mystery in an Amish setting.
coramdeo540 More than 1 year ago
Murder Simply Brewed (An Amish Village Mystery) Vanetta Chapman Book Summary: When the coffee shop manager is murdered in Middlebury’s Amish Artisan Village, two women from different walks of life must join together to solve the mystery. Spring has arrived in Middlebury, Indiana, and Amber Wright is optimistic about the growing profit from her collection of Amish shops---until she receives a call that Ethan Gray is dead. Hurrying over to A Simple Blend, she finds a solitary hole in the front window and the store manager lying next to the espresso machine, dead from an apparent heart attack. All the money is still in his register. When Amber hires a young Amish woman, Hannah Troyer, to take over the shop’s duties, the two women become fast friends---as well as amateur sleuths. The police believe Gray’s death is a by-product of vandalism, but Amber and Hannah aren't convinced. Clues that don't add up, a neighbor who is pulled into the midst of the investigation, a town with secrets to hide, and a blossoming romance---all will combine to push Amber and Hannah into unfamiliar roles in order to reveal answers to the mysteries around them. Book Review: This is going to be a fantastic series!!! This book was awesome. I was at the edge of my seat waiting for the other shoe to drop and when it did it was a wild roller coaster ride. There were thrills throughout. The wild ride in Amber’s car and the chilling suspects were all around at time. They seemed to know when and how to pop up. I could hardly make it to the end without screaming out loud. Unfortunately there is not way to read with your eyes closed so I had to take a deep breath and ride this thrill ride to the satisfying end. The end so heart felt it made the entire book a rich lesson in love. Not just the romantic kind. Well done Ms. Chapman if I wasn’t hooked before I would be now! I would like to thank Net Galley and Zondervan Fiction for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone.
NanceeMarchinowski More than 1 year ago
Amish Village Whodunit! The Amish Artisan Village is a popular, attractive tourist destination in Middlebury, the heart of northern Indiana's Amish community. This peaceful setting comprises of a variety of quaint shops featuring Amish-made merchandise, as well as an Amish restaurant, a quilt shop and a specialty coffee shop accompanying the Amish inn and conference center. General manager, Amber Wright supervises the community ensuring that business is running smoothly. Despite their differing lifestyles the Amish and Englisch staff blend well in operating the everyday activities in the village. Hannah Troyer, a young Amish employee at the quilt shop discovers several holes and cracks in the front window of the coffee shop next door, and the door unlocked. Upon entry to the shop Hannah finds Ethan Gray slumped over his front counter. His death appears to be the result of a heart attack. Questions arise when clues to the contrary indicate foul play could be involved. The plot thickens as additional incidents contribute to the mystery regarding Ethan Gray's death. Amber and Hannah conspire to solve this mysterious development as it appears that the local police aren't taking the details surrounding this death seriously.  There is no predicting what follows in this fast-paced and intriguing novel. A varied assemblage of diverse characters create suspense and a medley of developments. Vannetta Chapman is brilliant in creating a cozy mystery of legendary proportions. Her creativity in painting a beautiful and peaceful country setting, and at the same time depicting perplexing and enigmatic incidents is profound. Also included are bits of humor, a component of romance, charming descriptive elements as well as intense and bizarre activities.  The author's research of the location and customs of the residents, both Amish and Englisch are remarkably accurate. I have enjoyed Ms. Chapman's books since her first release, and I must say she continues to amaze me with her talent and ability to create engaging characters and intriguing developments in her stories. I highly recommend Murder Simply Brewed. Pick up a copy and grab a pot of coffee. You won't be able to set this book aside! Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Zondervan in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review. 
MaureenST More than 1 year ago
I can just picture the setting for Vanetta Chapman’s new book Murder Simply Brewed, so much peace. We are at a place called the Village, or Amish Village, filled with quaint shops, a hotel, restaurants, and a coffee shop called A Simple Blend. I could just picture myself walking the trail surrounding the pond, and sitting on one of the benches…of course the weather is mild and there is a warm breeze. This is the setting for a mysterious death, heart attack? Bee bee gun holes in the window, and a body slumped on the counter? The beginning, and with a bit of back tracking, and with one step forward, and two back, we head down the trail of suspicion. Especially when other odd things begin to happen, the police seem to have an answer for everything, but why all the coincidences at once? The funny part is all the people that show up for the mystery that is advertised on the Internet. They do make a mess of this little village. There are also a few romances going on here. An English one with Amber, the person in charge at the Village, and Tate, who when I meet him I picture an old widower. First impressions are often wrong, and I surely did it here. Then there is sweet Amish girl Heather, who has spent all of her life living next door to Jesse. He just happens to be there when a girl is having a bit of trouble. Just when you think you really know what has happened and who is responsible, blink and it changes. I was in a way rather surprised at the culprit, and what happens. I really enjoyed this fast pace, and quick read, just not liking that I have it all finished, I wanted more. I received this book through the Publisher Zondervan and Net Galley, and was not required to give a positive review