Lemon Drop Dead (Amish Candy Shop Mystery Book 7)
April 27, 2021
Lemon Drop Dead by Amanda Flower highlights a town, Harvest Ohio, where both Amish and “English” people co-exist along with tourists, babies, and killers. This book continues Flower’s winning streak of writing fun and riveting stories. Not only do they gain a glimpse into Amish culture, but also have great characters, some humor, and a who – done -it mystery.
In this novel, a friend and co-worker of the main character, Bailey King, is pregnant. Although not an Amish tradition, Emily Esh accepts a baby shower from the town. During the shower, a mysterious woman confronts Emily about a secret from her past. The woman disappears before Bailey could find out who she was. A few hours later, she is found dead in the pretzel shop owned by Emily’s family, with a threatening note written by Emily’s sister, Esther, found on her body.
“I wrote Ether as not very likeable and very stubborn. She is prickly, proper, and judgmental. She is bitter about having to run the pretzel shop all on her own. Basically, she is an unhappy person. I contrast her with Emily who is sweet, kind, quiet, shy, and naïve. Amish girls are not told about the birds and the bees. She has accepted the fact her brother is a jerk. At the core both sisters want to connect with each other.”
As a teenager, six year earlier, Emily had a baby out of wedlock, something frowned upon by the Amish community. Her sister and brother forced her give up the baby for “adoption,” although no formal papers were signed. Now the child’s adoptive mother is found dead in the pretzel shop. Both siblings have looked down upon Emily for her indiscretion. But now Bailey is asked to prove that Emily’s sister, Esther, did not murder the woman found in her shop.
“I wanted to write about this issue. Emily gave birth to Hannah six years ago. She gave her up right after she was born so she does not know Hannah is deaf. Bailey’s personal morals is at odds with the Amish community that frowns upon children born out of wedlock. Emily was judged very harshly for a mistake made when she was a teenager. In the Amish community reputation is highly valued.”
There is also some tension in the relationship between Bailey and the Deputy Sherriff Aiden. It seems he is taking a job with Ohio’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation, which would take him away from Harvest. In this story, this relationship is unresolved considering it appears it might have to be long distance. The other relationship between Bailey’s cousin and co-worker Charlotte and Deputy Luke Little is resolved in the story.
As with all Amanda Flower books, readers can quickly lose themselves between the pages. The mixture of sweets, Amish traditions, likeable characters, humorous banter, and murder always makes for an exciting mix.