Tag Archives: amish romance

Dangerous Amish Showdown Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Dangerous Amish Showdown

Author: Mary Alford

Genre: Amish Suspense

Release date: August 24, 2021

Under siege in Amish country…

She must fight for their lives.

Gunshots shatter Willa Lambright’s placid Montana evening—and that’s before she discovers on-the-run lawman Mason Shetler on her doorstep. Willa hadn’t glimpsed her childhood friend since he’d turned his back on Amish country years before. Now the US marshal’s returned with an injured partner, a young witness he must protect at all costs…and vicious Mafia agents dead set on making sure none of them survive.

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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USA Today Bestselling author Mary Alford loves giving her readers the unexpected. Her titles have appeared on the USA Today list, Publisher’s Weekly bestseller list, and have finaled in the Daphne Du Maurier award of excellence in mystery, The Beverly, The Maggie, and The Selah Awards.

Mary is an avid reader. She loves to cook, can’t face the day without coffee, and her three granddaughters are the apple of her eye. She and her husband live in the heart of Texas in the middle of 70 acres with two spoiled cats and a dog who thinks he owns the place.

More from Mary

When I first heard of the title for my latest Love Inspired Suspense, I smiled. Dangerous Amish Showdown reminds me of the old westerns where the good guys face off with the bad guys and always win. As a child I loved watching them, mostly because my dad loved them so much, and yes, a big draw for me besides sharing the time with him, was seeing the good guys win. It’s what I try to put into every single book I write, and it’s exactly what happens in Dangerous Amish Showdown.

Lately, I find myself reminiscing a lot about childhood things such as watching old westerns with my dad, and smiling at those simpler times.

In Dangerous Amish Showdown, it takes coming back to his simple childhood Amish community for Mason Shetler to realize how special that life once was for him. Through the courage found in a little girl who has lost everything, and the strength of a woman whose future is uncertain, Mason discovered what he had been searching for all along.

I truly hope you enjoy Mason and Willa’s fight to protect young Samantha and the love they find along the way. And I hope their happy ending leaves you with a smile on your face, and maybe takes you back to a simpler time in your life.

Blessings always,

Mary Alford

My Review

What dangerous events had taken place near her peaceful community to bring back a man who’d professed he would never return to the Plain life again? And what deadly effects would his return have on her simple world?

A different take on the Amish romance novel, Mary Alford’s Dangerous Amish Showdown introduces readers to US Marshal Mason Shetler, his partner Erik Timmons, and a precocious six-year-old named Samantha. She is under their care as a member of the witness protection program due to witnessing the murder of her parents, and Mason is determined to keep her safe at all costs. Ironically, doing so leads him home to West Kootenai, the Amish community of his youth and the place that he fled thirteen years earlier, and his childhood friend, Willa Lambright. A faceoff against the Mafia on a remote Montana farm does not present good odds, but it may offer unexpected redemption.

When I consider the romantic suspense genre, Amish fiction is not the first thing that comes to mind, especially when the Mafia is involved! This anomaly is therefore intriguing, and I appreciate how Alford utilizes it to encapsulate a story about redemption and deliverance. Even though Samantha is ultimately the target, it is Mason’s faith that has been under fire since the events that caused him to leave his Amish upbringing, and Dangerous Amish Showdown highlights both the physical and spiritual battles that we face in this life. In many ways it parallels the Biblical story of the prodigal son, as Mason is slowly able to see the winding path of his life: “Through the years of beating himself up for the decisions he’d made back then, Mason hadn’t really thought about God directing each one of them, taking Mason’s missteps and using them for His purposes.” Even when those purposes include heartache and suffering.

Throughout the gripping narrative, Willa and her ailing mother, Beth, demonstrate the essential, life-giving power of godly faith in the midst of great trials, against overwhelming odds. As such, the sacrificial nature of these women and of the Marshals serves to remind readers of Jesus and His ultimate sacrifice on our behalf. As the situation becomes more dire for the characters, Matthew 19:26 kept coming to mind, wherein Jesus tells His disciples: “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” The same God who knows each sparrow that falls to the ground is the same God who watches over us, and nothing is too hard for Him. He is always the victor of showdowns with evil.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 22

Maureen’s Musings, September 22

Hebrews 12 Endurance, September 23

The Avid Reader, September 23

Genesis 5020, September 23

Texas Book-aholic, September 24

Vicarious Living, September 24

Inklings and notions, September 25

Blossoms and Blessings, September 25

Betti Mace, September 26

For Him and My Family, September 26

Lighthouse Academy Blog, September 27 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

deb’s Book Review, September 27

Older & Smarter?, September 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 28

Bizwings Blog, September 28

For the Love of Literature, September 28

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 29

Living the Good Life, September 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 30

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, September 30 (Author Interview)

She Lives To Read, October 1

Bigreadersite, October 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 2

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 2

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 3

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 3

Mary Hake, October 3

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 4

Simple Harvest Reads, October 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 5

HookMeInABook, October 5

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/11b56/dangerous-amish-showdown-celebration-tour-giveaway

Shielding the Amish Witness Book Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Shielding the Amish Witness

Author: Mary Alford

Genre: Amish Romantic Suspense

Release date: April 1, 2021

Seeking refuge in Amish country puts everyone she loves in danger.

On the run after discovering her brother-in-law was behind her husband’s murder, Faith Cooper can think of only one safe place—her Amish grandmother’s home. But when danger follows Faith to the quiet Amish community, her childhood friend Eli Shetler is her only protection. And their survival depends on outlasting a relentless killer…one who has nothing left to lose.

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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USA Today Bestselling Author, Mary Alford, loves giving her readers the un-expected, whether it be in a rugged mountain setting or a peaceful Amish community.

Her titles have appeared on the USA Today Bestselling List, Publisher’s Weekly Bestselling List, and have been finalists in the Daphne Du Maurier award of excellence, The Beverly, The Maggie, and The Selah Awards.

Mary lives in Texas with her husband, two very spoiled cats, and a sweet rescue dog name Cody. Mary is very active online and would love to connect with readers on Face-book and Twitter or any social platforms listed at www.maryalford.net.

More from Mary

As a reader, I love books that are part of a series. There’s something comforting about being able to revisit characters that are special to me and meet new ones along the way. You get to go back to your favorite place and hang out with the people who make you smile.

It’s like coming home.

When I set out to write a series about five Amish brothers, I knew exactly where I wanted to set the series. The West Kootenai Amish community in Montana. West Kootenai is a remote community with sweeping mountain views surrounded by vast wilderness spaces. The perfect setting for suspense, along with a chance at redemption and a second chance for the hero and heroine. I love that.

In November, I introduced Covert Amish Christmas, the first book in the series that featured Aaron Shetler, the oldest of the five brothers.

In Shielding the Amish Witness, we meet Eli Shetler, a widower who has returned to West Kootenai to try to start over after his wife’s death two years earlier.

Eli is reunited with his childhood friend, Faith Cooper, who is running from a relentless killer who was once part of her family.

The book takes the reader through the breathtaking countryside of West Kootenai and into the homes of the Shelter family. We get to catch up on what Aaron and Victoria have been up since last we met and are introduced to some new family members. That’s the wonderful thing about series.

So, come with me on a trip to the beautiful community of West Kootenai, Montana where I hope my characters will make you feel right at home.

In writing about the Amish, I’ve come to love preparing their dishes. I’ve tried many recipes, from Amish Pizza to Friendship soup. But one of my all-time favorites is Amish Fry Pies. They are SO good!

Today, I thought I’d share the recipe for Amish Apple Fry Pies. I love this delicious desert and I hope you will as well.

Blessings always,

Mary Alford

AMISH APPLE FRY PIES

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(recipe courtesy of neighborfoodblog.com and a favorite of mine)

yields: 6

INGREDIENTS

For the filling:

  • 2 large apples, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons cider
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch

For the dough:

  • 2 cups flour, sifted
  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup HOT milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the glaze:

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 Tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • Vegetable or canola oil, for frying

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. To make the filling, combine the apples, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla in a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat until juices start to form, about 3 minutes. Make a slurry by whisking together the cider and cornstarch. Stir this into the pan, turn the heat up to high, and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is thickened, about 3 minutes longer. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. For the dough, cut the butter into cubes then use a pastry cutter to work it into the flour. Continue to cut in the butter until it’s in small pea-sized lumps. In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and salt together. Slowly pour in hot milk, stirring constantly. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture. Stir together until a dough begins to form. Turn the dough out onto parchment or wax paper, and knead it until it smooths out, about 1 minute.
  3. Divide the dough into 6 equal sized pieces and roll them each into a ball. Use a rolling pin to roll them out to about 6-inch circles. Fill each circle with 2 Tablespoons of apple mixture. Fold the dough in half over the filling and pinch the edges together to seal. You can flute the edges or use a fork to crimp them. If the edges aren’t sealing properly, wet them with a little water.
  4. Heat the oil in a deep saucepan to 350 degrees. You can test to see if the oil is ready by sticking a wooden spoon into the center of the pot. If small bubbles form around the handle, you’re ready to go.
  5. Place the pies in the hot oil one at a time and fry until golden brown on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and place on paper towels to dry.
  6. Repeat with remaining pies.
  7. While the pies fry, make the glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk until smooth. It’s best to glaze the pies while they’re still warm. I use a pastry brush to brush the glaze on one side then let it dry, flip them over, and glaze the other side. You can put two coats of glaze on for extra sweetness if you like but wait for the glaze to harden in between coats.
  8. Pies can be stored uncovered for 2-3 days. If you want the glaze to remain hard, do not place the pies in a plastic bag or sealed container. Just leave them on a wire rack or pan.

My Review

The foundation holding her world together crumbled and she realized everything had been a lie. There was nothing perfect about her life.

A word to the wise: do not read this book if you are looking for a laidback, cozy-style mystery! With the exception of the epilogue, from page one until the end this is an adrenaline-fueled race that will have you looking over your shoulder for any villains. Though perhaps not especially unique for being set within an Amish community, Mary Alford does make Shielding the Amish Witness stand out for the interesting comingling of characters. Faith Cooper, fleeing her brother-in-law after discovering evidence linking him to her husband’s murder, turns to her grandmother and the Amish community to which she belonged years ago. Her childhood friend, Eli Shetler, has also returned after tragedy, and he makes it his mission to protect Faith. There is so much at stake, including hurting hearts, and an outcome that only God can determine.

As I read Shielding the Amish Witness, I kept thinking about how cinematic it is. It is very easy to picture this book as a Lifetime movie or as an episode of a true crime show, although the story itself is fictional. In some ways it reminds me of a clean horror movie, with the evildoer an indestructible force who always manages to get right back up and keep coming after the victim. I have to admit that while the cinematic aspect is one of this novel’s greatest strengths because readers can visualize the scenes, for me it is also a deterrent to some extent. I think it’s important to note, however, that I do not have any personal experience with the situations in the story, or with law enforcement, so I am not certain which situations may be commonplace. In my opinion, the scenarios feel a tad too dramatized and too repetitive, which stretched the credulity for me. I felt frustrated with how the characters seem to be stuck in a recurrent cycle, but at the same time I believe there is a lesson here. So many times we, myself included, do the same thing when it comes to sin and our relationship with God. We know what things we should avoid, and yet we still tend to fall into the same traps over and over on this journey through life, and until we confront whatever causes us to stumble and deal with it, there won’t be change. Thankfully, Jesus is with us every step of the way, and we can, as one of the characters in the story advises, “Live your life in the now and in the future. Don’t look back.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, May 17

Genesis 5020, May 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 18

For the Love of Literature, May 18

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 19

The Avid Reader, May 19

Texas Book-aholic, May 20

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, May 21

Blogging with Carol, May 21

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 23

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 23

For Him and My Family, May 24

Hallie Reads, May 24

Inklings and notions, May 25

Blossoms and Blessings, May 25

Older & Smarter?, May 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 26

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 27

deb’s Book Review, May 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 28

Maureen’s Musings, May 28

Simple Harvest Reads, May 29 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

She Lives To Read, May 30

KarenSueHadley, May 30

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize of a $40 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10bbd/shielding-the-amish-witness-celebration-tour-giveaway