Simply Dead

Simply Dead - Eleanor Kuhns

Will Rees, his wife, and family live in the house that his wife inherited and that the Shaker community covets. He married into the Shaker community, even though the Shakers don't seem to accept him that much. He had previously investigated a murder in the community and it seems that he will be doing it again as the daughter, Hortense, of a midwife,  goes missing. 

There are two men who are looking for her. Will finds her in the snow without shoes or a coat. He and his wife Lydia are suspicious of the circumstances. They hide her away in Zion, the local Shaker community. There is an eye witness and it appears that the description of the witnesses matches that of Josiah Wooten, a nasty man who lives with his wife and two sons. 

Will investigates the family and is surprised by what he finds. He has gone to the Wooten home in a blizzard, puts his life at risk yet again. He is determined to not only find out why Hortense went missing but also investigate the murder of the Shaker sister and what the correlation is between the two incidences. He is concerned about the welfare of his family and that they could be in danger.

The author writes in such a way that you can almost feel like you are in the snowy woods of 1790's Maine. A community that is set far apart from the rest of the country. There is a cast of characters that are believable. The story is suspenseful and you also get a feel for what it is like to live in a Shaker community. There are also some twists to the story that was not expected. I love a story that does that, I don't want to figure out who did what in a mystery, I like being surprised.

This is only the second Shaker Murders book that I have read but I found that I really did not miss not having read the previous ones in the series. I want to start the series from