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Murder Simply Brewed

Vannetta Chapman
Murder Simply Brewed
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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 collect... Read More

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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"

Additional Information

  • Product type: Book
  • Format: Softcover
  • Release Date: Mar 25, 2014
  • UPC: 9780310326168
  • Height: 0
  • Width: 0
  • Length: 0
  • Volumes/Discs: 1
  • Pages: 358
  • Publish Date: Mar 25, 2014
  • Language: English
  • Audience Age Maximum: 0
  • Audience Age Minimum: 0
  • BISAC: "FIC042040"
  • ISBN: 0310326168

Customer Reviews

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Sweet suspense spiced with romance by Vera on 7/30/14
Rating

Authors who have the ability to bring their readers into a locale, associate with the people living there, and become immersed in their lives from book to book to book are authors of noteworthy achievement. Vannetta Chapman does this again and again and again.

In Murder Simple Brewed the locale is an Amish tourist attraction. A village of shops. Employees are not all Amish, though, and the atmosphere is typically touristy, shopper friendly, and peaceful in an Amish sort of way.

There are Amish employed in the village and one of these is Hannah. The manager of the village shops is Amber. The story begins in a relaxed manner somewhat akin to the atmosphere we would expect in the Amish tourist village. It is relaxed until the unforeseen happens – Ethan dies suddenly and under confusing circumstances.

As the story unfolds, characters and their ups and downs and their kindnesses and meanness come to the forefront. While not totally unexpected, we are somewhat surprised at the climax and intensity of the ending. But I’ll never tell, you’ll just have to pick up your own copy of Vannetta Chapman’s faithful story of sweet suspense spiced with a bit of young and old romance.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy of Murder Simply Brewed from the author in exchange for my review. Opinions expressed are solely my own. I was not compensated for this review.

Delightful blend of Amish, mystery and romance by Carole on 7/12/14
Rating

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 and to BookLook Bloggers for providing an electronic copy in exchange for my honest review.

Great Book by Deanna on 4/23/14
Rating

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.

A Roller Coaster Ride to the End by Robin on 4/9/14
Rating

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.

Amish Village Whodunit! by Nancee on 4/7/14
Rating

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.

Read Additional Customer Reviews Below

Additional Customer Reviews

An Amish Mystery by Maureen on 4/3/14
Rating

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

Murder Simply Brewed by Vannetta Chapman by Tina on 3/19/14
Rating

Murder Simply Brewed: An Amish Village Mystery book 1 by Vannetta Chapman*****

Amber Wright is the manager of the Village, a collection of Amish shops and inn set in peaceful Middlebury, Indiana. Everything seems to be running smoothly and Amber is optimistic that with spring's arrival visitors to the shops will pickup. However, on this morning she gets a frantic call informing her that one of her shop managers has been found dead in his store, A Simple Brew coffee shop. Thus begins a chain of events she and other shop managers and employees could not have foreseen.

Hannah Troyer leaves her Amish home and bikes around the pond to the shop she works at, The Quilting Bee, located next to the coffee shop. As she prepares to open the store she becomes concerned when the coffee shop had not opened yet, well past the time Ethan Gray usually opens. She goes over to check on Ethan and finds him slumped over his counter, dead! In shock she calls Amber to tell her about Ethan. As she waits for Amber's arrival, she can't get the picture of Ethan out of her mind. After the police arrive and take care of Ethan, Amber asks Hannah to “manage” A Simple Brew until she can find a replacement for Ethan since she has helped him in the past.

At first they think Ethan had a heart attack, but clues started adding up that it may be more than that. Hannah, Amber and Tate Bowman, a neighbor near the Village shops, form an unlikely team in hunting down clues of what happened and find themselves in what could be a dangerous mystery.

Murder Simply Brewed is a fun story full of surprises, mystery, secrets, budding romance, faith and God's grace and more.

~~I received an advanced copy of this book from the author for my review~~

LOVED IT by Elizabeth on 3/11/14
Rating

Murder Simply Brewed
By: Vannetta Chapman
Vannetta Chapman has did it again, She has woven a book with Amish, English, Mystery, Murder, and romance all rolled up in Murder Simply Brewed. This book takes place in Middlebury Indiana where , Amber Wright, an English woman who has a collection of Amish Village shops. Amber gets word that her store manager, Ethan Gray , of A Simply Brewed is found dead with what looks like a heart attack in his store. Hannah Troyer is a young Amish woman that Amber hired to take over A Simply Brewed after the death of Ethan. Amber and hannah becomes really good friends and the two decide to try and solve the mystery death. Now there is a lot of people that did not like Ethan, but who would want him dead?
There is also some romance in Murder Simply Brewed. Vannetta Chapman has done a good job of joining the Amish and English together. Her Characters are so real you feel like you are right there with them. When I started reading Murder Simply Brewed I did not want to put it down . I was on the edge of my seat trying to hang on to see what happen next.
I love this book and I believe you will too.
I was given a copy of this book by the author and publisher Zondervan for my honest review .

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