Rural America – 1928. After the murder of his partner, Detective Rollin Wells hides away in an Amish home near Sugarcreek, Ohio, to find out who in the police force is collaborating with Cleveland’s notorious mob. While Rollin searches for answers to his partner’s death, he befriends an elusive young Amish woman named Katie and her young son. As Rollin learns about Katie’s past, he’s shocked at the secret Katie is hiding – a secret that has haunted Rollin for eight years.
This was a nice twist to the usual Amish storylines. I have to say that incorporating a mafia element to an Amish story is creative! 🙂 I felt like The Silent Order was a well-written novel. I thought the pacing was good, the author kept the intensity going throughout. The characters were interesting and for the most part, likeable. I would recommend it for people who love Amish literature and are ready for something a little different. To be honest, I’m just not a fan of those storylines where the guy ends up with a different sister than he started out with. Even if she’s dead, as was the case in this novel. I thought Katie’s choice to not tell Henry that she was really his aunt was wrong. It was understandable in some ways, because he was so young and they were on the run. But still, her attitude made it seem as though Liz was just a terrible person and she was Henry’s only mother and she never wanted Henry to know the truth. I saw it as brave that Liz didn’t choose to have an abortion. The only reason Katie even had Henry as her son was because of Liz. I also didn’t understand why Rollin didn’t want to tell Henry he was his father right away, when it was so obvious that he wanted to be with Katie and that Henry was desperate for a father. It also seemed abrupt that after thinking of and grieving for Liz for so long, Rollin quickly decides he can love her sister. Of course Katie can love Rollin; she’d been pining for Rollin while he’d been dating her sister.
I had one other issue. I felt like there was a point where the door was opened to explore some of the tougher truths regarding faith, but it was quickly moved past. At one point, Rollin has these thoughts: “In his experience, God’s hands seemed to be tied, like He was up there but unable to stop the bad from happening.” After all Rollin had seen, I thought this was a reasonable conclusion to come to. But this is never developed fully. There comes a point where Rollin asks God to forgive him of his sins, but these deep questions about who God is were never delved into.
Still, overall a well-written and intriguing novel.