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Blood of the Prodigal: An Amish-Country Mystery, Book 1 | [P. L. Gaus]

Blood of the Prodigal: An Amish-Country Mystery, Book 1

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".
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Publisher's Summary

A compulsively readable new series that explores a fascinating culture set purposely apart.

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".

Listen to another Amish-Country Mystery.

©2000 P.L. Gaus (P)2011 Random House

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (173 )
5 star
 (37)
4 star
 (64)
3 star
 (52)
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Overall
3.7 (145 )
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3 star
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1 star
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Story
3.9 (144 )
5 star
 (46)
4 star
 (55)
3 star
 (33)
2 star
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1 star
 (3)
Performance
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  •  
    Greg 07-01-12
    Greg 07-01-12 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Solid 4 for kids"

    I don't know if the author intended this series for kids but it should work well for murder mystery (without explicit violence) buffs up to the age of 15, give or take a year. Adults may want to pass as characters are thinly drawn and procedural details in all disciplines are lacking.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Madge Sterling, VA, United States 07-03-12
    Madge Sterling, VA, United States 07-03-12 Member Since 2009

    LIfe-long reader, fond of mysteries, scifi, fantasy. Prefer good story-tellers, with interesting premises. Road warrior-so listen a lot!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A fascinating look at a separate culture among us"

    Most of us know something of the Amish - that they try to live separate from the technological world, that they are pacifists, and maintain old crafts - that there is deep faith, but also a mandated conformity to the norms of the community, that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. A child is taken by his father, who had been banned from the community for wildness, and the Bishop is reluctant to do more than verify the child is OK - but lacking the resources, he asks two outsiders who understand the community to locate the child.

    This story is complex, but the twists and turns are logical and "character-driven", based on the characters as shaped by the needs of the culture. The end is satisfying,

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Librarian OK, USA 06-11-13
    Librarian OK, USA 06-11-13

    Retired "Okie" librarian & happy to have found Audible for good stories & staying in touch with new authors & books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    107
    ratings
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    58
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    Story
    "Living separate is sometimes good."

    Fascinated with mysteries peopled with Amish, I thought of the movie "Witness" with Harrison Ford as I downloaded this title. Not as suspenseful as the afore mentioned movie, it is an easy listen and introduction into an authentic Amish community separate but within an "English" community. The author appears to have done thorough research into a little understood relationship of disparate communities living parallel to each other. With the exploration into human nature that the structure of this mystery allows, the study of traditional values versus modern temptations is expanded. The mystery is well written and structured, I didn't guess the ending until the author meant me to see it. A good, nay, excellent GP mystery with equally good narration. I will welcome adding to my collection of Gaus books.

    A personal tie to a Mennonite life cements my interest in the Amish and led to my listening to "Blood of the Prodigal". I understand the Amish and Mennonite are different, but this author sympathetically describes a lifestyle foreign but intriguing to me.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy New Mexico 12-10-12
    Kathy New Mexico 12-10-12 Member Since 2007

    Kathy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting view of the Amish attitiudes"

    I really liked the way the author incorporated cultural bits of Amish beliefs into how the main characters went about solving the crime. The two main characters, "English", were likeable and sympathetic to the Amish points of view. The sherrif was a bit more jaded in his view than they, but he was smart enough to work in the background with his knowledge of crimes and Amish to ensure that the crime was solved. Unfortunately, the plot was not riveting for me. If you want to learn more about Amish life and views, I think you will find this story very interesting, if you are looking for an action type book, it will probably be too slow for you. I definitely liked the book enough to check if there are more to the series because the main characters seem like they be fun to observe as they evolve.
    You should find George Newbern a good narrator. I enjoyed his style and was able to easily distinquish between the characters. If you aren't too picky and like Amish, give P.L. Gaus a chance.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Penrith, Australia 07-31-12
    David Penrith, Australia 07-31-12

    I am legally blind and talking books are the way I survive.

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    "An Excellent Tale"

    I found the story captivating and demanding of my full attention. As with every good read (even a detective novel) there is more to the book than the story. The social discussion as to the role of religion in and the challenges it presents to our society I found interesting.

    Newberns' reading was excellent.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol 07-20-12
    Carol 07-20-12 Member Since 2015
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    "Complex plot excellent start for series."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, it is a compelling story for a lifestyle many can only try to understand. The humanity of people comes through no mater what the lifestyle or religious belief is. In a time when most of people are striving for more, stuff, things and excitement this simple lifestyle mixed with murder and mystery can be complicated to comprehend. The narrator really brings the story to life. The relaxed tone and intonation of the voice made this a great listen,


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Simple life is not so simple?


    Any additional comments?

    I will continue to read the series. It's nice to read a complex story with out all the muck and foul language. This is a book with a murder mystery but also good values. It's a nice change to all the bang bang shoot em up stories.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 07-30-12
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 07-30-12 Member Since 2008

    Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Satisfied me"

    I enjoyed this mystery and found the subject matter new and refreshing. It never got preachy or religious, but showed an understanding and respect of the Amish people. It was an easy, light listen that kept my interest, and I finished it in two days.
    I am thinking a 3 1/2 star rating, close to a 4.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. A. Smith 07-05-12
    D. A. Smith 07-05-12

    dsmitmn

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Disappointing"
    What did you like best about Blood of the Prodigal? What did you like least?

    I was interested to read a story set in Holmes County, Ohio, a beautiful part of the country. Unfortunately, it is poorly written.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    The narration seems rapid and flat. The occasional dramatic moments are overplayed.


    Any additional comments?

    I won't choose more in this series. The plot is thin. The treatment of the Amish is respectful, but seems superficial, repetitious, and preachy. The author's favorite narrative device -- one or another character suddenly feels that he or she is missing something -- is overused.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    valerie newport news, VA, United States 07-26-12
    valerie newport news, VA, United States 07-26-12 Member Since 2011

    I listen to books all the time, When I am driving, cleaning, cooking or doing anything quiet. I am AUDOBSESSED!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "interesting twist"

    This book is a grat murder mystery, and has some great twists that you don't usually see in Amish fiction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AP pa 07-25-12
    AP pa 07-25-12 Member Since 2015

    Ann

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Amish Mystery"

    Audiobook was very good. First I have listened to by this author. The narrator was very good also, he kept your attention throughout the story....would listen to another by this author!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Maureen
    EDINBURGH, United Kingdom
    3/1/12
    Overall
    "Interesting"

    I did enjoy this book with its excellent 'feel' for the Old order Amish community and its lovely descriptions of Ohio where we visited a few years ago. I found the solution of the murder mystery, however, a little less satisfactory. I will nevertheless probably still buy the next book in the series.

    George Newbern's reading is excellent and adds to the enjoyment of the book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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