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Missing (The Secrets of Crittenden County #1)
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Amish Group Reads > June's Book - Missing by Shelley Shepard Gray

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Rachel Brand This month we're reading Missing by Shelley Shepard Gray.

Missing by Shelley Shepard Gray

Can two young people survive the suspicions of their friends and neighbors when tragedy strikes a close-knit Amish community?

Perry Borntrager had been missing for months from the quiet Amish community of Crittenden, Kentucky, when his body is discovered at the bottom of an abandoned well. The first death from mysterious circumstances in more than two decades brings the scrutiny of the outside world: A police detective arrives to help the local sheriff with the investigation. His questioning begins with Lydia Plank, Perry’s former girlfriend, and Perry’s best friend, the Englischer Walker Anderson.

Lydia and Walker know they didn’t have anything to do with Perry’s death, but they both hold secrets about his final days. Do they dare open up about the kind of man Perry had become? In the oppressive shadow of these dark times, they discover strength in a most unlikely companionship: one that offers solace, understanding, and the promise of something more.


As usual, jump in with any thoughts you have on the book! Just please refrain from posting any spoilers until later in the month. If you are going to post any spoilers, make sure you post a warning, like *** SPOILER ALERT! ***. Enjoy!


Becky | 24 comments This was a good read not my favorite Shelley Shephard Gray Book but that could be because I'm not a huge suspense fan, but still looking forward to The Search.


Rebecca I am waiting for this one at the library. Our library doesnt have the other Missing by Eason.


Rachel Brand I've just started this one and I'm really enjoying it so far. I've read a couple of Shelley's books before and liked them, but not loved them, but this one definitely has a different feel to it.


Rachel Brand Okay, I've finished this one now! I realised about 2/3 of the way through the book that the mystery wasn't going to be completely solved by the end of this book, but to be honest, I didn't mind it so much. I think the fact that there are so many characters introduced means that they can't all be properly developed in one book. I particularly want to hear more about Abby and Lydia in the later books, so I hope it isn't too long until I get to read them.

What is everyone else thinking so far?


message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

Rachel wrote: "Okay, I've finished this one now! I realised about 2/3 of the way through the book that the mystery wasn't going to be completely solved by the end of this book, but to be honest, I didn't mind it ..."

The fact that they mystery wasn't going to be completely solved by the book's end was one thing I didn't like. Maybe that's why I also like cozy mysteries. Even if there is a series, each book has its own mystery which is solved by the end.

Also, I didn't find it particularly interesting. I can honestly say I don't really care how it turns out or what the secret is. I'm not sure if I'll read books 2 & 3 or not. I had rated it 3 stars, but in retrospect, that was probably too high. I should have gone with 2 stars.


Lorie | 1324 comments Mod
Rachel wrote: "Okay, I've finished this one now! I realised about 2/3 of the way through the book that the mystery wasn't going to be completely solved by the end of this book, but to be honest, I didn't mind it ..."

The next book comes out this month. I read some of the bonus stuff but I don't really know that it helped me figure anything out.

I also did not like the fact that the mystery was not solved by the end. I love Cozy Mysteries too.

Anyways I felt I needed more and was not really done when the book ended.

I liked how the title "missing" meant so much more than the guy who went missing and was found dead. So many characters felt missing.

Overall not my favorite series of hers but that might change when I finally see what the trilogy brings.


Rachel Brand I kept thinking that something big would at least be revealed by the end of the book, even if the whole mystery wasn't cleared up. There were a lot of hints about Lydia and Walker hiding something from the detective and ultimately I was a bit disappointed when their secrets were revealed as I was sure it was going to be something bigger than that. So that's what stops me from giving it more than 4 stars.

To be honest, I'm more interested in reading the next books because I like the characters, not because I'm desperate to find out what happened to Perry. I think Perry's death sets off a chain of events but isn't actually the centre of the story, if that makes sense.

The only books by Shelley that I've read before are Grace, The Caregiver and The Protector and I'd have to say that I prefer this book slightly, but I don't know if the Families of Honor series is really Shelley's best work. I like her style of writing in this book better; I never felt like I got to know her characters in the Families of Honor series.


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

I guess this is where I need to step in and apologize for nominating this book. It sounded sooooooooooo much better than it ended up being, IMO. I think I won't nominate any books in the future. Again, my apologies to all.


message 10: by Rachel (last edited Jun 11, 2012 05:05AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rachel Brand There's no need to apologise, Elizabeth! You can't always predict how a book is going to work out. Personally, I did really enjoy this book, even if I did wish more of the mystery has been solved by the end of it.

Plus, it makes for a far more interesting discussion if some of us liked the book and some of us didn't. Otherwise we'd all just sit around saying "I loved it! Didn't you love it?" and it would be pretty boring.

Please, keep nominating books. You can't always predict how much you're going to like a book. I was really excited about Beverly Lewis's new book and it ended up just being an average read for me, even though I'd loved some of her other books. But then sometimes you read a book by a totally new author and love it to bits. I think it's interesting that Lorie enjoyed Shelley's other books better while I preferred this one.


Lorie | 1324 comments Mod
Yes please do not not nominate another book. I am really glad I read it and it was not a bad read by any means. It was just missing some stuff for me that I like.


message 12: by Diane U (new) - added it

Diane U (djuseless) | 1411 comments Elizabeth, I agree with Rachel! It helps spark discussions when the book is not a 5 star book. :)


Rachel Brand Lorie wrote: "Yes please do not not nominate another book. I am really glad I read it and it was not a bad read by any means. It was just missing some stuff for me that I like."

Haha, MISSING some stuff? Sticking to theme here very nicely ;)


Lorie | 1324 comments Mod
Rachel wrote: "Lorie wrote: "Yes please do not not nominate another book. I am really glad I read it and it was not a bad read by any means. It was just missing some stuff for me that I like."

Haha, MISSING so..."


lol totally unintentional


message 15: by [deleted user] (new)

Thank you all for being so kind. I guess I just felt bad that folks had gone to the trouble of buying it or borrowing it from their libraries and didn't like some things about it.

And I will continue to nominate books.

Thanks again!


Barbara (goodreadscombarbara_beers) | 1492 comments Mod
I really liked the book. When it dawned on me that the mystery was going to be solved in the book, I did a "yippie!" I can't wait to get to know all of the characters a bit better.

Who do you think did it?


Rachel Brand Barbara Ann wrote: "I really liked the book. When it dawned on me that the mystery was going to be solved in the book, I did a "yippie!" I can't wait to get to know all of the characters a bit better.

Who do you thin..."


I actually have no idea how did it. I'm intrigued by Jacob's character as he seems pretty bitter, but most other people just seem hurt by Perry rather than angry about him. Does anyone have any ideas?


Becky | 24 comments Missing is a good book, but I too felt like there wasn't really anything resolved in this book.

Elizabeth, you've promoted discussion which is the whole point.

I will finish the series from the library, but Shelley has some other great books in Seasons of Sugarcreek and Families of Honor series.

While I do have to disagree that I was completely invested in that series especially with Mattie's and Lucy's stories through the series.

I sometimes struggle with first books in a series because I am just getting to know the characters maybe the characters of The Secrets of Crittenden County will grown on me too.


Rebecca I was intrested in the next title being called The Search and I just finished the second book in Suzanne Fischer Woods book also called The Search. Is that okay as far as publishing goes?


message 20: by Rachel (last edited Jun 13, 2012 01:13AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rachel Brand Rebecca wrote: "I was intrested in the next title being called The Search and I just finished the second book in Suzanne Fischer Woods book also called The Search. Is that okay as far as publishing goes?"

I think that eventually titles end up getting repeated, especially the shorter, simpler ones. I don't think titles can be copyrighted either.


Carolyn E | 239 comments Elizabeth wrote: "I guess this is where I need to step in and apologize for nominating this book. It sounded sooooooooooo much better than it ended up being, IMO. I think I won't nominate any books in the future. ..."

Elizabeth: Please keep nominating books. I really liked this story. I am looking forward to reading the second book in the series.


Carolyn E | 239 comments Rachel wrote: "There's no need to apologise, Elizabeth! You can't always predict how a book is going to work out. Personally, I did really enjoy this book, even if I did wish more of the mystery has been solved b..."

Rachel: Re The Fiddler, Beverly Lewis's new book, my reaction was just the opposite. I think I have sort of "burned out" on Beverly Lewis's books, so I was not expecting much of the new one.

I was pleasantly surprised. I loved the book!! In fact, I gave it 5-plus stars. I am looking forward to reading the next one.


message 23: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne | 17 comments This was a good book but the end kinda left me hanging and wondering about Perry. I guess you have to buy the rest of the series to find out if they solve the murder and what happens.


Janet | 153 comments I enjoyed the book. Yes a lot of unanswered questions but that is how series goes.

Looking forward to the next one and finding out Who did it.


Julie (julieanne1) | 13 comments ****Spoilers**** This book started off really good but it didn't seem to really go any place or continue to grab me all the way through. Since it's a trilogy, where the story just continues and doesn't resolve in each volume, it was a little disappointing in that way. I also didn't think the title, "Missing," really fit the book. I kept expecting one of the characters to wind up missing. I suppose the author really meant that people felt they had things missing in their lives. In that way the title was a little deceptive. I think this would have been a better book if all three books in the trilogy had been put into one book. Still, it was a good choice for this group and I'll be reading the next 2.


message 26: by Kate (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kate (liahonagirl) Julie wrote: "****Spoilers**** This book started off really good but it didn't seem to really go any place or continue to grab me all the way through. Since it's a trilogy, where the story just continues and d..."
I could not agree more with what Julie wrote . . . this one didn't grab me as much as I'd have liked it too, but I'm curious to see where the author will go with the storyline, so I'll be finishing out the series for sure.


Rebecca I really like this one. I loved the story between Walker and Lydia. I guess I forgot about poor ole Perry. I think the Abby storyline lacked some for me. I have ordered the next book and am looking forward to reading the series.


Margaret (margarette) Lorie wrote: "Rachel wrote: "Okay, I've finished this one now! I realised about 2/3 of the way through the book that the mystery wasn't going to be completely solved by the end of this book, but to be honest, I ..."

I also liked that the title had more than one meaning, Lori.

I love mysteries, too, and I'm also one of those who didn't realize the mystery wouldn't be solved in the end but, like Rachel, it didn't bother me a lot because enough had been revealed that I felt like it ended in a good place.


Margaret (margarette) Rebecca wrote: "I really like this one. I loved the story between Walker and Lydia. I guess I forgot about poor ole Perry. I think the Abby storyline lacked some for me. I have ordered the next book and am looking..."

I wasn't really enamored with Abby either, Rebecca. She's very whiny and immature. In fact, I thought she was about 11 or 12 until it was mentioned that she's a high school senior.

I agree with you that Walker and Lydia are great characters. I also really liked the sheriff, although he didn't play a big role in the book, and his friend, the detective from the city.


Margaret (margarette) Rebecca wrote: "I was intrested in the next title being called The Search and I just finished the second book in Suzanne Fischer Woods book also called The Search. Is that okay as far as publishing goes?"

We did read two very different books this month called Missing! It does get very confusing though and using the same title for several books seems to be really common in the Amish genre. I think I have that Woods book and I think I also have one by Beverly Lewis titled The Search.


Margaret (margarette) It looks like more didn't like this book than did. I liked it a lot. I gave it to my mother-in-law and she loved it.

I think I've read only one other by Grey, Hidden, Sisters of the Heart (Actually I believe I read 2 in that series), but I think her writing is very good.


message 32: by Judy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Judy (sweetpeajudy) | 6 comments I loved Missing by Shelley Shepard Gray and I can't wait to read "The Search." I love mysteries and I love that it wasn't solved at the end of this book. Keeps us hanging! Love it!


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