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By P. L. Gaus

Book 1 of the Amish-Country Mysteries

"For greater than a decade, P. L. Gaus has been writing quietly spellbinding mysteries about... the conservative outdated Order Amish of Holmes County, Ohio."—Marilyn Stasio, New York Times

within the wooded Amish hill state, a professor at a small university, an area pastor, and the county sheriff are the one ones one of the mainstream, or "English," who own the instincts and talents to paintings the situations that impression all county citizens, irrespective of their code of behavior or spiritual creed.

while an Amish boy is abducted, a bishop, apprehensive for the security of his fans, plunges 3 outsiders into the ordinarily closed society of the "Plain Ones."

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As time passed, the bishop’s attention seemed to stray, and Branden fell silent. On a long, uphill stretch of a gravel lane, the bishop let the reins go slack, content for the moment to have the horse trudge along at its own pace. He leaned back heavily against the buckboard and sighed like a man who had endured a surpassing loneliness. “Professor,” he said, and then faltered. Clearing his throat, he began again. ” He looked fervently into Branden’s eyes. His expression was somber, and he seemed overwhelmed by the burdens he had shouldered.

No,” Branden said. “The bishop wouldn’t speak of her at all. Just that Jonah met her in a bar and left town before the child was born. The bishop and his wife took in the boy as an infant and have raised him since then. ” “Should be easy enough to find out who she was,” Caroline volunteered. ” “No, and that could mean her folks would be more willing to talk about Jonah,” Cal observed. After a moment in thought, Branden said, “It’s unusual for the bishop to have approached Englishers for help. And I agree with Caroline.

She never speaks of it now, but I find her weeping sometimes when she prays. And I have prayed for him too, without failing, in all these years. We pray that to have cast him out will one day bring him home to us. Every day, Professor, we pray for his return. We always will. We never lose hope. ” Branden looked over at the bishop and watched him snap his whip to bring the horse to a brisk pace. The look on his face made it plain that he did not intend to linger in the memories of bygone years. Having said what needed to be said so that Branden would understand, he now evidently considered the matter closed.

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