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Cover Her Body, A Singular Village Mystery (Singular Village Mysteries) [Kindle Edition]

Eleanor Sullivan
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Death was not uncommon in 1830s Ohio.But murder?

In a strict, religious society in 1830s rural Ohio, a 16-year-old girl is murdered because she's pregnant, but the only person who suspects it wasn't an accident is Adelaide, a young, midwife, who worries that the remedy she gave the girl for a "woman's ailment" caused her death. Adelaide's husband, Benjamin, fearful that they'll be banned from the prosperous community, forbids her from questioning the girl's death. But a mistake she made years ago cost the life of a mother and her unborn babe, and Adelaide vowed to never let another mother die.

Pressure mounts when Adelaide is accused of harming the girl, but the allegation only fuels her determination to find the killer, even though she begins to suspect that her husband might be involved in the girl's death. And the more she investigates, not only does she start to question her own faith and beliefs, but she finds herself attracted to an unlikely man in the community, a man who has vowed to remain celibate. Then her questions alert the outside authorities and now this isolated community is invaded by the very society they had shunned.

Editorial Reviews


"Readers who love stories with strong Amish heroines will be excited to discover this book. Fascinating fiction,unique people,vibrant descriptions, crisp dialogue also contribute to this compelling book."
Karen Harper, NYTimes Best Selling author of The Home Valley Amish Trilogy

From the Author

Ever wondered what life was like in the early 19th century? Come along with me to experience the work and lives of 19th century settlers in a rural Ohio village who escaped religious persecution in their native Germany to carve a prosperous community out of the wilderness. Into this world comes Adelaide, a spunky, determined midwife, and her husband, Benjamin, who wants only to preserve harmony. Until murder interrupts their lives.

Product Details

  • File Size: 539 KB
  • Print Length: 312 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1936214555
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Yesteryear Press/Wyatt-MacKenzie (December 14, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006MK4YJ0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #109,720 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top of the genre September 1, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I love action/mystery stories that feature strong women. Generally I don't read historical fiction because, well, I miss the fingerprints and cell phones. But the description of "Cover" sounded so interesting that I decided to give it a try and I am very glad that I did. This novel works on every level: the reader learns about a period of history that most are probably unfamiliar with; the whodunnit portion is as well done as any I have read; and the main character demonstrates a way of getting things done when, perhaps, you are not the one - in this case even the class - with any real power. Since our power relationships always put us below someone or some group, we can all learn from Adelaide. "Cover" is one of the very few works of fiction which I am likely to read again, perhaps more than once, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cover Her Body August 16, 2012
Having just visited Zoar, Ohio this summer and also being a descendant I was eager to read Cover Her Body in hopes of getting a historical peek into the lives of my ancestors. This was such an enjoyable read and a great little mystery that I had to remind myself that I was reading fiction. Eleanor stirred the village of Zoar and her characters (both factual and imagined) to life in an exciting tale of murder, redemption and forgiveness. Will be looking forward to more Eleanor Sullivan stories in the future. Recommend!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cover Her Body Covers All the Bases July 20, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Eleanor Sullivan's Cover Her Body is a historical Murder Mystery set in 1830's Zoar, Ohio. A Separatist community follows strict rules, as many religious sects stemming from Old World countries. However, history is filled with instances where such strict adherence is not only an obstacle to law and order, but the actually the cause of life-threatening actions. In Sullivan's tale of religious rules, young love, murder, women's struggle for equality, and self-awareness, there is nothing lacking.

Adelaide, the main character and hero, is a young married woman struggling with an awakening of the world around her, and an opening and expanding mind; when she comes upon the reality that her dear friend's daughter has been murdered. Determined to find the killer, she is relentless in her search for the truth of what happened, and at the same time, discovers that the flickers of self-doubt that plague her are unwarranted.

The characters are a rich tapestry of vivid and vibrant workmanship. Each may be woven of Fiction, but form a reality that is impenetrable by the reader's mind and eyes. Head to foot creative artistry is abound as the tale unfolds, and readers attempt to follow the clues Adelaide is putting together to solve the crime that only she is willing to accept as a reality.

The plot is interesting and tantalizing to the senses. Erected in the simplistic countryside of Ohio, the tale is anything but basic. It holds a multitude of layers and stories within the main tale. A reader will never be bored with this novel, although it bears careful reading, if for no other reason than the reader's attempt to solve the crime before Adelaide.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent thoughtful historical crime novel July 1, 2012
During its history, the United States has periodically seen the rise of religious movements of various kinds. Sweeping westward, religion followed the colonization of the land by emigrants from Europe. In the early nineteenth century, one such revival brought colonies of survivalists from Central Europe seeking relief from the persecution of powerful main-stream religions. One such small group came from Wurttemberg, Germany in 1817, with help from Quakers in England. They called themselves the Society of Separatists. Under the leadership of a single charismatic leader named Joseph Belmer, they became a strict religious group, tightly bound, with many rules of conduct that people today would find oppressive and questionable. That is the background for this excellent historical crime novel.

The author is a descendent of the founder of Zoar, where the members of the Society of Separatists established their village on five thousand acres of owned land on Northeastern Ohio. When the novel opens it is 1830 and the village has completed the digging of a portion of the Ohio and Erie Canal. Redemption and self-denial are fundamental beliefs of the society, such that no one travels alone, children are housed in dormitories and life is strictly regulated. A free-thinking woman like Adelaide, principal character in the well-written novel, is seen as a disturbing influence. When she finds a young village woman dead in the nearby river, an apparent suicide, the village is thrown into turmoil and the specter of outsiders is immediately raised. Adelaide, trying to adhere to the society's principles but still determined to do the right thing by her dead friend, represents a danger to the leaders of the community.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cover Her Body May 24, 2012
Cover Her Body

Eleanor Sullivan
Leaving her home Adelaide to go to her favorite spot by the river she never expect to come upon the scene that would change not only her life but many others. A vision, a body in the water that was all tangled up come into view and she, although fearful of the water Adelaide went in to bring the body to safety hoping the person would be alive. What she did find and uncover was a young girl, Johanna Applegate, who was dead and the reaction of the people and those in charge was anything but compassionate. Belonging to the Separatists she knew she had broken the rules by going out by herself. The head demanded she prepare the body and the burial happen right away. Telling her parents would be the job of this one man and the way they would be told his doing too. But, the reason for her death has yet to be revealed as there is much more that remains to be seen. Adelaide is a young midwife who works in a small village called Zoar. The year is 1833. The Separatists run this village and the death of young Johanna has been deemed an accident but Adelaide thinks otherwise. She thinks it is murder. Found dead in the river she relates what she saw but the Zoarists, a group of Germans who came to America to escape religious persecution formed a communal society and worked for the state of Ohio digging canals.

Realizing from the onset that Johanna did not drown, Adelaide will stop at nothing to learn the truth and why she was killed. The Separatists are not too thrilled with her and Adelaide is on a quest to find her killer. But, first she would have to convince her mother that something was wrong with her death and keep Gerda, her sister from asking too many questions.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing Historical Fiction
I was taken with the story from page one. It contained poetic imagery and a very deeply woven, murder mystery. Read more
Published 13 months ago by A. Cowher
4.0 out of 5 stars Good historical mystery
This historical mystery is set in the early 1800's in a commune of German immigrants who call themselves ''Separatists". Read more
Published 14 months ago by Patricia
5.0 out of 5 stars Historical fiction
Great historical murder novel about a little known religious culture from Germany that landed in a spot they named Zoar, Ohio in the 1800's. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Bruce T
5.0 out of 5 stars Must Read For Mystery/Historical Ficton Buffs!
A well written and informative depiction of a young women's life and trials in 1830s Zoar, Ohio- Cover Her Body was the perfect mixture of mystery and historical fiction. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Jamie
5.0 out of 5 stars Exciting!
What an interesting story of a midwife who is a sleuth when a mysterious death occurs. The main character, Adelaide is a strong and sharp cookie. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Gary Kodner
5.0 out of 5 stars History, culture and murder
I just finished the book, "Cover Her Body", which I greatly enjoyed. The
historical context was very well done and very interesting-- the depiction
of communal... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Sharon Biegen
5.0 out of 5 stars Cover her body
An uncanny look at early religious freedom in the new world. A murder mystery interwoven with bad medicine and good old fashioned herbal remedies.
Published 21 months ago by Tlv
4.0 out of 5 stars A nineteenth century midwife investigates a murder.
In the small Separatist community of Zoar, Adelaide is the community midwife and healer. She finds a woman in the river and pulls her out. Read more
Published 22 months ago by C. Reynolds
4.0 out of 5 stars Good fast read.
Finally a woman who stood her ground to men who would try to diminish her. Interesting look into their world.
Published on March 9, 2013 by DANNA HOLZMER
4.0 out of 5 stars cover her body
Loved this book...keeps you on the edge of your chair until the very end. If you like mysteries you'll like this book.
Published on February 18, 2013 by bj
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More About the Author

ELEANOR SULLIVAN is the author of Singular Village Mysteries set in 1830s Zoar, Ohio, a village settled by her ancestors after their escape from religious persecution in Germany. The series feature a midwife, her cabinet-maker husband, and the town's leader, Eleanor's distant grandfather. The stories--and the murders in them--are fictitious; the town and its history are real! Graven Images is the second book in the series, following the release of Cover Her Body.

In her former life, Eleanor was dean of a university school of nursing, president of the world's largest nursing organization, editor of a prestigious professional journal, and author of award-winning books for nurses as well as a medical mystery series. Eleanor is a past member of the national board of Sisters in Crime and is an active member of Mystery Writers of America.

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