Too Many Crooks Spoil The Broth
First book in A Pennsylvania-Dutch Mystery series
by Tamar Myers
Magdalena Yoder runs the PennDutch Inn in Hernia, PA and is related to almost everyone in town, either close, distant, or once removed, etc. Her sister Susannah, who left the Mennonites to marry but is now divorced, lives at the Inn but is very undependable, lazy, and sleeps around. Their parents died in an accident and Magdalena and Susannah are the only ones left in their immediate family.
It is the beginning of deer hunting season and they are looking at having a full house, so full that when Miss Brown shows up Susannah has to clean her room so Miss Brown can have that room. A Congressman, his wife Lydia and his aide are expected as are several members of A.P.E.S. (the Animal Parity Endowment Society). Billy Dee Grizzle and Lydia Ream are the nicest of the guests, Miss Brown wants to be left alone, even for meals, and the rest are just strange. The A.P.E.S group is vegan, the Congresman's group and Billy Dee want meat, so this causes problems with Freni, the cook and she ends up quitting and being fired several times.
The first night dinner is quite the scene but once every one is in bed, someone hears a thump and Miss Brown is discovered in a heap at the bottom of the stairs. The police are called and the body is taken away so they can do an autopsy. A couple of days later, after Magdalena gets shot at a couple of times, Susannah's dog Shnookums chokes but Magdalena saves him, the hunters have left the Inn each day (if that's what they're actually doing) and the A.P.E.S. group have spent their time looking for the Congressman's group to try and prevent them from hunting, (they never do find them), one of the other guests is discovered dead with her hand gripping a homemade quilt. Susannah discovers her as she is looking for Shnookums pacifier.
Now with two deaths, looking more and more like murders happening in her Inn what will happen? Will people still want to come, looking at the reputation she's had up until now, or will they decide it's not the kind of place they want to stay at?
Don't judge this book by it's title, the Mennonites are not anything like you'd expect. Magdalena's brain seems to be thinking strange thoughts constantly, it's kind of funny some of the things she thinks to herself. There are some curse words, which really surprised me, not a lot and not 'filthy' ones but if you don't like reading these words, I would suggest you not read this book. If you like cozy mystery's you'd probably really like this.