Friday, February 22, 2013

Blog Tour: A Plain Scandal by Amanda Flower (Interview, Spotlight and Bookgiveaway!)

Synopsis of A Plain Death

An unlikely friendship between a high-tech woman and a runaway Amish girl leads to murder. Her first day in Appleseed Creek, Ohio, Chloe Humphrey, befriends Becky, an ex-Amish teenager looking for a new home. While driving Chloe’s car, Becky collides with a buggy, killing an Amish bishop in the process. The case moves from accident to murder when police reveal a cut brake line. Now, Chloe and Becky’s handsome brother, Timothy, must discover who the real intended victim is before the murderer makes a second attempt.

Appleseed Creek Mystery #1

B&H Publishing
Published/Released: July 2012
ISBN 13: 978-1433676970

Buy Now
Barnes & Noble

Synopsis of A Plain Scandal

The Amish in the quiet Appleseed Creek community are under attack. An unknown assailant is cutting off the long hair of Amish women and the beards of Amish men. Computer specialist, Chloe Humphrey, is alarmed over the crimes against the Amish and worries over how the events will impact the Troyer family, especially her housemate Becky and Becky’s older brother Timothy. Her anxiety increases when she discovers the body of an Amish businessman, who had been stabbed in the back and his beard cut off. Now, Chloe and her friends must find the culprit behind the hair-cutting before someone else pays the ultimate price.

Appleseed Creek Mystery #2
B&H Publishing

Published/Released: February 2013
ISBN 13: 978-1433676987

Preorder Now

Barnes & Noble


Author Interview

I would like to welcome author Amanda Flower to Socrates’ Book Review Blog and Socrates’ Cozy CafĂ© Blog.  Amanda is the author of the Appleseed Creek Mystery series.  We are thrilled to have her join us. 

Welcome to our little part of the world, Amanda!

1)         How did the Appleseed Creek series come about?

The series began as a conversation with my agent. We were kicking around concepts for a new series. After several ho-hum ideas, I mentioned I used to live in Amish Country when I was in my twenties. She latched onto that and told me write about it. As soon as I revealed my Amish connection, I thought, “Uh-oh” but not because I disliked Amish fiction. I had read some wonderful Amish fiction and enjoyed it. My worry was most Amish novels weren’t my style of quirky, humorous writing. Immediately, I began negotiating and asked if it could be a mystery, if the main character could be English (non-Amish), and if I could write in first person. My agent told me to go for it, and the rest is history.

2)         Do you have any idea how many books will be in the series or where you are going with the characters?  Is there an outline?

I’m contracted for seven books, six novels narrated by my computer geek, Chloe Humphrey, and one Christmas novella narrated by former Amish teenager Becky Troyer. I’m so grateful that B&H signed on for that many books. That’s a huge commitment for a publisher to make.

I don’t really outline when I write, but I do know where my protagonist, Chloe Humphrey, and most of the recurring characters will end up at the end of the series. A Plain Scandal is the second novel in the series, but I have written through number four. I know I only have two “Chloe” books left. I’m steeling myself for finishing her last book because I’m going to miss her. Happily, the series will go on with Becky for one novella and maybe more. It’s too early to tell about Becky’s journey yet.

3)         What else have you written?

In addition to the Appleseed Creek Mystery series, I’ve written the India Hayes Mystery series (Maid of Murder & Murder in a Basket), the Amish Quilt Shop Mystery Series written as Isabella Alan (debuting September 2013), and the Andi Boggs Series (mysteries for kids debuting in March 2014.

4)         What made you decide to be an author?

I’ve always love to tell stories. My father used to call me “storyteller” when I was a child because I would come home from preschool with wild tales involving the other kids in my class. Usually those events really happened. I just made them more exciting. Then when I was older, I read a story to my sixth grade class about being stuck at the top of the Ferris wheel. Again, I embellished the tale a bit. They class laughed at my story, and that was the ah-ha moment for me when I realized I could write stories that would make someone laugh.

5)         Who is your greatest influence in your writing life?

There are two things: my faith and my other occupation. My faith first because even though I write humorous mysteries for both the Christian and mainstream market, I hope what I believe comes through.

My job as a college librarian is second. On the job, I’m dealing with interesting bits of information while I help students. Sometimes what I learn ends up in a book in unexpected ways. I was helping a student with a project on polio and thought, “Huh, did the Amish suffer from the Polio epidemic?” From there I researched further, and ultimately, it is how Grandfather Zook had polio as a child. Being a librarian is the best job for someone who loves to learn.

6)         How did it feel when you first found out you were going to be published?

Shocked. Completely and utterly shocked. Then elated, worried, happy, weepy, and overjoyed. It was quite an emotional ride.

7)         Who are your favorite authors and what are your favorite books?

Mysteries will always be my favorite, but I find myself reading more and more fantasy too. There are so many great mystery authors, but if I had to pick, my favorite is Nevada Barr.

8)         Have you had a chance to go to book signings?  How does it feel when you meet your readers in person?

I’ve had many book signings over the years, and I love them. It’s a great way to connect with readers and answer their questions about my books or just about me as a person. Also, I like to hear their stories about how a particular book, not necessarily mine, impacted their lives.

9)         Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?

Don’t give up. It took me nine years to publish my first mystery. Just keep trying. It may take time, but if this is what you really want, you will break through.

10)       Can you give us a sneak peek at your next release?

The first week of September 2013 will be a double whammy for me. I have two books releasing the third Appleseed Creek Mystery and the first Amish Quilt Shop Mystery, which I write as Isabella Alan.

Coming September 2013:

A PLAIN DISAPPEARANCE, Appleseed Creek Mystery #3
It’s Christmastime in Amish Country, and Chloe Humphrey settles into her life in Appleseed Creek excited to see where her relationship with Timothy Troyer will lead. Unfortunately on her first official date with Timothy, the couple discovers the body of an Amish teenager Katie Lambright. Near the body, there is evidence that Timothy’s friend and auto mechanic Billy Thorpe is involved with the murder. The police reveal Billy is an escaped convict who has been living the last decade in Knox County under a stolen alias. Now, Chloe and Timothy must find Billy bring him to justice or prove his innocence.

MURDER, PLAIN AND SIMPLE, An Amish Quilt Shop Mystery by Isabella Alan
Welcome to Rolling Brook, Ohio where life is not as tranquil as it seems. When thirty-four year old Angela Braddock moves back to Ohio to recover from a broken heart and inherit her Amish aunt’s quilt shop, she discovers there is more to the Ohio’s Amish than beautiful quilts and hearty food. With the help of her quilting circle, Angela stumbles into the unlikely role of amateur sleuth.

Thank you so much for stopping by!

Thank you for having me! Readers can learn more about me on my website,, or through social media. I love connecting with readers through Facebook and Twitter.

Social Media Links: Facebook Twitter Goodreads Pinterest


How would you like to win a copy of this for your very own? Thanks to author Amanda Flower and publicist Michelle from Shelton Interactive, I can offer a copy of A Plain Scandal to one lucky winner.  This is open to all, including international!!!

Just a few simple rules...

1) You must fill out the form below (including a valid email address).

2) For an extra entry: Follow this blog

3) For an extra entry: Follow me on Twitter

4) For an extra entry: Follow me on Goodreads

5) For an extra 2 entries: Post this giveaway on your blog.

6) For an extra 2 entries: Tweet about this giveaway.

The giveaway begins on February 22nd (midnight est) and ends on March 10th (midnight est).

The winner will be notified by email and has 48 hours to respond, otherwise a new winner will be chosen.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. An AMish mystery does sound pretty fun and differnt

  2. Thanks for this fascinating giveaway which sounds captivating and special. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  3. They sound pretty good. I'm not usually one for mysteries, until I decide to read one that is. :D Thanks!

  4. I love the idea of introducing a more "worldly" character into an Amish setting! Great interview!


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