Secrets in the Graveby Karen Ann Hopkins (Website, Facebook, Twitter)
Series: Serenity's Plain Secrets #3
Genres: Adult, Amish Mystery, Thriller
Amazon • Goodreads
Praise for Lamb to the Slaughter, book one of Serenity’s Plain Secrets: “A well-crafted tale of murder begotten by the collision two incompatible worlds…” –Kirkus Reviews
Some Amish communities aren’t so cozy.
Just when Sheriff Serenity Adams thinks life is getting back to normal, the death of a young, pregnant Amish woman rocks the community. Is it circumstance…or murder? It’s up to Serenity and her ex-Amish boyfriend, Daniel Bachman, to discover the truth about the new shaman-type medicine man who’s brought his dark secrets to Blood Rock.
But Serenity has secrets of her own, and if she and Daniel don’t work it out, the reappearance of a woman from his past could threaten to ruin their relationship.
The deeper Serenity delves into the magical world of Amish herbal medicine, the phenomenon of laying of the hands and other cultural healing oddities, the more she wonders if miracles are real. What she witnesses with her own eyes may be too fantastical for her to believe.
In this riveting third installment of Serenity’s Plain Secrets, beliefs are challenged, a way of life is questioned and family skeletons are unearthed, leaving no one untouched.
Find Secrets in the Grave
I’m so happy to bring you the cover for the third installment in Karen Ann Hopkins’ Serenity’s Plain Secrets series, Secrets in the Grave. This is another great cover by Jenny over at Seedlings Design Studio. I really loved this book, so make sure that you stay tuned after the review for a giveaway Karen’s running with the Cover Reveal tour.
In Secrets in the Grave, Sheriff Serenity Adams and her deputy Todd Roftin are called out to the nearby Blood Rock Amish settlement to investigate the unexpected death of a pregnant, unmarried woman in her early twenties. Due to the suspicious circumstances of the woman’s death and the recent appearance of an Amish medicine man–whose presence in this settlement isn’t welcome by all of the residents–Serenity digs into the circumstances surrounding the woman’s passing. What Serenity and her formerly Amish boyfriend Daniel Bachman find when they begin to investigate leads them to another settlement in Indiana and back again, but not before Serenity is put into more dangerous situations than she may have faced on the mean streets of Indianapolis.
Who said that small town living would be more safe for the Sheriff?
The further along I read in Secrets in the Grave, the more I thought “Serenity is really earning her money in this book. She’s kicking butt and taking names, but she’s also taking a licking too.” But that’s a good thing, because main characters shouldn’t be infallible and they really shouldn’t always win either. Karen Ann Hopkins does a great job of balancing the wins and losses in a very human and realistic way in this series.
Relationships aren’t always smooth sailing…
Daniel and Serenity’s relationship is nearing a crossroads in this book, and while Daniel is ready to jump all in and totally commit to Serenity, she’s afraid to make that leap. Her past has left her with trust issues that she can’t seem to get past, and although Daniel should be in a similar situation with his past relationships, he’s so sure of his feelings for Serenity that he doesn’t have many reservations about their coupling. Serenity’s hot and cold back and forth threatens to push him away, especially when someone from Daniel’s past who can understand him on a level that she’ll never be able to suddenly becomes a colleague of Serenity’s in the prosecutor’s office.
Sometimes it takes seeing someone in a similar situation to be able to cope with your own…
Serenity’s rush to judgement over how the murdered girl could have been involved with start to color her investigation, pushing her harder to solve the case. With links to the past decade and the present, getting to the bottom of this case is only keeping Serenity from focusing on a few of her own. Sometimes, she has to learn to face her personal fears, because you can only be so fearless in your job for so long before you’re completely worn out.
I give Secrets in the Grave a five out of five. This is Serenity’s most dangerous and personal-hitting investigation yet, and her formerly sleepy Kentucky town is growing more dangerous with each book. With excellent character growth and a very thrilling, fast-paced overall plot line throughout the book, Secrets in the Grave definitely upped the ante in what I expect out of a Serenity’s Plain Secrets novel. Serenity has found how to navigate the Amish but she still needs Daniel to steer the boat to less choppy waters, and the ride is still anything but smooth sailing. With more big city problems invading both the Amish community and Serenity’s small town, I’m sure that the storm is on the way–and I can’t wait to see what’s next in book four.
(Full Disclosure – I beta edited this book, so these opinions are completely my own. I wasn’t compensated to provide my unbiased opinion of the book)
Find Karen Ann Hopkins
About Karen Ann Hopkins
You can visit Karen Ann Hopkins at her website.
Karen Ann Hopkins resides in northern Kentucky with her family on a farm that boasts a menagerie of horses, goats, peacocks, chickens, ducks, rabbits, dogs and cats. Karen’s main job is home schooling the kids, but she finds time to give riding lessons, coach a youth equestrian drill team, and of course, write. She was inspired to create her first book, Temptation, by the Amish community she lived in. The experiential knowledge she gained through her interactions with her neighbors drove her to create the story of the star-crossed lovers, Rose and Noah.
Karen grew up about a mile from Lake Ontario in Upstate New York. She was bitten by the horse bug at the age of five, and after diligently taking riding lessons for several years, was rewarded with her first horse when she turned eleven. The feisty horse’s name was Lady, a Quarter Horse-Thoroughbred cross, who became Karen’s steadfast companion. Through the years, the constant force in her life was horses. Eventually, she found her place as a riding instructor herself. Before accepting her fate in the barnyard, she worked a short stint as a paralegal, traveled abroad, and guided tourists on horseback riding tours in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.
Karen is currently working on her Amish mystery series, Serenity’s Plain Secrets, along with the YA paranormal/fantasy series, The Wings of War. Karen is also excited to announce the Temptation series has been optioned for TV by Pilgrim Studios and is available on Audible. More books in the Temptation series are in the works.
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