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Down to the Bone

3.88  ·  Rating Details  ·  261 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Rachel Mast is doing all she can to keep her life together one year after the tragic death of her husband. Against all Amish traditions, she is running her small farm and raising her twin boys on her own. And for the first time in a long time, Rachel is happy.

Then things start happening.... Her dead husband's belongings turn up in unexpected places, her sons are acting str
Paperback, 416 pages
Published May 1st 2004 by Mira Books (first published 2000)
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55th out of 186 books — 23 voters
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252nd out of 283 books — 17 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 536)
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Oct 14, 2007 Rebekah rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Not well written, but an ok read that passed the time in a pleasant enough manner. It was pretty predictable, which was ok for the time. I got it thru a bookcrossing release. The first one I ever caught. I have to release it back into the wild now. Not something I would particularly recommend, but if you do see it on its journey, pick it up at least to bring it inside and out of the cold for a while.
Nov 05, 2015 Connie rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-ve-read
Mystery and romance. Wonderful story of conflict concerning an Amish widow and the mysterious happenings at her farm a year after her husband dies. There is a great deal of historical interest in the old barn on her farm. Enter a love interest, but he isn’t Amish. She wants to keep the farm going for her twin sons, but Amish tradition means the males in the community do the farm work and her doing it is not acceptable. So, she should remarry. Lots of community interest there. Not much of it want ...more
Jun 11, 2010 Sadi rated it it was amazing
So creepy! It kept me guessing over and over again! It was very interesting to read considering the main character was Amish. Made me learn things that could be usefuul someday, who knows?
Oct 19, 2008 Dawn rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys a good suspense novel.
Recommended to Dawn by: I read all of Karen Harper's books.
Very good suspense novel from Karen Harper. This murder mystery involves the Amish in Ohio. I enjoy stories that have Amish characters.
Full review/original posting on my blog:

I was very skeptical about this book at first. I like books that take place in an Amish setting but I really, really don’t like ‘sappy’ romance novels, which is what most of the Amish books I’ve been seeing lately are all about. But this book was passed down to me by two people who really enjoyed it and were excited enough about it to find someone to share with. I had to at least try it, right? After leaving it for a
Apr 10, 2009 Louise rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Phew!!! What a great and involved read this was..woo..hooo! lol

"Deep in the heart of a small Amish community lies a secret someone thought was buried forever. But one woman may have just unknowingly uncovered it...

Rachel Mast is doing all she can to keep her life together one year after the tragic death of her husband. Against all Amish traditions, she is running her small farm and raising her twin boys on her own. And for the first time in a long time, Rachel is happy.

Then things start happenin
The Loopy Librarian
Aug 13, 2013 The Loopy Librarian rated it really liked it
Karen Harper has always been one of my favorite writers in the romantic suspense genre. Down to the Bone is one of several of her books that feature the Amish community. The juxtaposition of Amish ways with modern ones and the interactions that take place are fascinating. Because of the Amish element, the romance is kept out of the bedroom and is played out instead with romantic tension and relationship development. I prefer my romances this way. The relationship that develops between Mitch and ...more
Oct 26, 2010 Jacqueline rated it really liked it
This was another good one by KH. It was a very good creepy suspense book. The romance part was extremely lackluster. It seemed that the Amish woman and the English man didn't really spend anytime falling in love but the mystery part was so well done that I forgave that. The only thing I don't forgive is that the author had the Amish woman owning golden Percherons to work her farm. Percherons are black or shades of grey. Belgians are light chestnut. They can be any shade of red from light gold to ...more
Jul 30, 2015 Georgene rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
An interesting story based upon a modern Amish community in Ohio.
Robert Kradoska
Apr 09, 2015 Robert Kradoska rated it really liked it
Amish way of life vs the American way
Dec 06, 2014 Mary rated it it was amazing
Excellent book. Suspensful.
Jan 19, 2014 Marissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
As a big fan of Harper's Amish mystery/romance stories, I was excited to finally find a copy of Down to the Bone. It did not disappoint. This one is set in Clearview, rather than Maple Creek, where a number of the other books are set, but the communities are related. The mystery is intense and downright spooky in some sections, and the way it all ties together in the end is a bit stunning. Another fast-paced and good read.
Jan 21, 2014 Theresa rated it it was amazing
Found a new author to follow. Enjoyed the clean writing style, and edge of your seat suspense.
Aug 22, 2012 Teri rated it liked it
Reading this book for my book club...i'm starting to like these 'amish' mysteries, just something new i guess. But right now i am just hoping its NOT Mitch. but as for the book, i am only half way thru. It was alittle slow going at first, but by the 4th chapter or so, it starts to get interesting. but its good. i will try another karen Harper book.
May 31, 2011 Jacque rated it liked it
I enjoyed this look into the Amish society. There were plenty of suspects and I would pick the guilty party only to change my mind again and again. I love that I was completely surprised by the ending. I also really liked the heroine.
Oct 19, 2010 Dale rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
Really a fast read. Author keeps you guessing throughout. Has a bit of romance that teases the reader. I am going to look for another of Karen Harper's books to see if they are as good.
Barb Wild
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 07, 2013 Kelli marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I registered a book at!
Jun 19, 2011 Marg rated it really liked it
Shelves: amish
a good suspense novel by karen Harper. It is a little creepy at times. I do look forward to more novels by karen
Feb 12, 2010 Carina rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes suspense
Recommended to Carina by: my mom
It was a very good book. I couldn't put it down, a very surprising ending.
Mar 05, 2008 Nancy rated it it was amazing
Murder mystery set within an Amish community in Ohio; never guessed the ending!
Jul 27, 2007 Pam rated it really liked it
Mysterys that are in the mideastern area that will keep you up at night.
TinaLovesReading marked it as to-read
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Madge rated it did not like it
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A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Karen Harper is a former college English instructor (The Ohio State University) and high school literature and writing teacher. A lifelong Ohioan, Karen and her husband Don divide their time between the midwest and the southeast, both locations she has used in her books. Besides her American settings, Karen loves the British Isles, where her Scott ...more
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