Falling to Pieces A Shipshewanna Amish Mystery Series
by Vannetta Chapman
Five Stars *****
Review by Carrie Fancett Pagels
Callie is a young widow who comes to Shippshewanna after her beloved aunt dies. Auntie owned a quilt shop and several Amish women are reliant upon her to sell their quilts. One of the women has a significant need for the funds as she has a child with a rare illness. Callie is a spunky woman from a big city in Texas suddenly in small town Indiana. A real fish out of water. But as the story progresses one senses she was a goldfish swimming in the ocean who needed to be in a tank, required the cozy closeness that provided. Lovely job of dropping that into the story over time. The Amish quilters are lovely women, each with distinct voices that are also unlike most other Amish stories I have heard.
Callie hasn’t gotten over the loss of her husband, in fact doesn’t even share this with her new friends until very late in the book. She is an endearing character despite her prickly behavior, which furthers the story line, especially when she becomes the prime suspect in a murder. This is not a romance but there are a couple of romantic possibilities. By the end of the story we have a real possibility for a boyfriend in the next book, which I am looking forward to reading/listening to!
This was a great Christmas season listen because it a) has an easy tempo b) has an excellent narrator (amazingly she sounds almost exactly like the real Vannetta Chapman!) c) it’s like having a girlfriend in your room with you telling you the story d) while it is a suspense/mystery it has a cozy feel and is not knuckle whitening – I mean who needs that this time of year? It has a soothing quality to it despite the suspense and the murder mystery. It may be one of the first women’s fiction reads I’ve read in a long time, but Vannetta’s book almost defies genres.
I plan to listen to this book again sometime as I really liked it and it has the qualities of a repeat listen - great voice, characterization, and pleasing story line.
Bibliotherapy: Loneliness, estrangement, grieving, child with a rare disease, and friendships.
Formats: I listened through http://audible.com and it is available in paperback, ebook (e.g., Kindle), and audio.
Giveaway: Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of one of Vannetta’s books this week.