Dating Can be Deadly

An Amish Matchmaker Mystery #5

By Amanda Flower

ISBN 9781496737489

Author’s website:

Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie


Perfect for fans of cozy mysteries, small-town mysteries, wholesome romance, inspirational fiction, and readers of Jennifer Beckstrand, Charlotte Hubbard, Rachel J. Good, and other authors of Amish fiction.

It’s August in Holmes County, and that means it’s time for the Holmes County Fair. It’s the county’s biggest annual event, drawing tourists and locals alike to see livestock, eat too much fried food, and watch the rodeo and speed racing contests. This year, Millie has entered the quilting competition—while her very not Amish best friend, Lois Henry, is distracted by her new dating app and her search for husband number five. In a place where quilting is a way of life, the competition is fierce—especially this year, when an anonymous donor doubles the winning cash prize. Amish and English women are up against each other, and some will do anything to win—even murder . . .

When someone attacks the quilt barn by slashing the quilt display, it’s unsettling enough. But when a quilting judge is found murdered, Millie knows it’s time to for Lois to get off her app and help her hunt for a killer instead—before the competition is wiped out for good . . . (From Goodreads)


This charming, humorous series and the Amish Candy Shop Mysteries series shares the setting of Harvest, Ohio, and many of their characters. For me, it makes each series even better to have shared characters as there is a wider range of situations to enjoy them in. The main difference is that each series has a different sleuth. Readers are blessed to “visit” their favorites more often than if seen only in one series. I enjoy each of the characters, especially Millie, Lois, and Uriah, and Millie’s goats. Jethro, the emotional support pig Julia, the wife of the pastor of the nearby church, has also won a place in my heart. Each person in the series is designed as carefully as any prize-winning quilt, and each is colorfully three dimensional.

Millie, the Amish matchmaker, and her very colorful, non-Amish best friend since childhood, Lois, were going to the county fair. Lois would meet a potential gentleman friend who she “met” through a dating app, while Millie would submit one of her quilts to show. Millie and her friends in her Amish district’s quilting circle sold many of their quilts for a source of income. This was the first time Millie was showing one at the fair, in part because she made this one with the intention of gifting it to a very special young couple when they marry. She knows many Amish women who are more skilled than she is, but every stitch in this quilt has extra love and her best work. Ruth, her bishop’s wife and one of the best quilters, did not get her application in on time. Tara, the woman in charge of the quilts, refused to accept a late entry from Ruth, and a very upset Ruth took her quilt and left.

After Millie turned in her quilt and Lois met Virgil, the three of them enjoyed a walk through the fair. Virgil has an interesting game booth at the fair, one that Lois enjoys tremendously. Lois was sure that Virgil might be husband number five.

Micah, Millie’s great nephew, worked diligently with her two adorably troublemaking Boer goats so he could show them at the fair. Peter and Phillip could cause trouble in a heartbeat, and the number of times they escaped from their pen at the fair was minor compared to their behavior at home. They could be the most interesting goats in the show ring! Zach, a boy around Micah’s age who was rarely allowed to attend school, was also in the goat barn. Zach loved his sweet, miniature pygmy goat that needed a new home before the fair was over with, and Millie and her friends want to help him with it.

One night Sal, the guard at the fairgrounds called Millie, as her goats had escaped their enclosure and he couldn’t find them. Lois gave Millie a ride there, and they searched for Peter and Phillip all over the grounds. Finally, Millie gave the special, loud whistle she uses at home to get their attention, then heard one of them inside the quilt barn. The quilt barn was locked earlier by the security guard and was unexplainedly unlocked. The goats were in there. So was the body of Tara, who would not be organizing any more quilts. She had been killed, and was lying on the quilt that Ruth took back home earlier that day. The beautiful quilt had been violently shredded.

The sheriff and his lead deputy quickly responded to their call. They have had many good clues from Millie and Lois in past cases, as this isn’t the first time they found dead bodies or helped solve murders. Lois nicknamed Millie the Amish Marple, and she is Millie’s excellent sidekick. When the bishop’s wife was the main person of interest, Millie was determined to find the real killer.

This fast-paced mystery held my attention from beginning to end. There is laugh-out-loud humor and very serious, somber moments. Plot twists and turns, including a missing boy and a case of arson, kept the story moving faster and this reader guessing. The killer was real shock, as was the person’s unrepentant attitude. There are no loose threads, and I was very excited about the surprise at the very end! I highly recommend this novel and series!