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Kate Burkholder #8

Among the Wicked

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Chief of Police Kate Burkholder is called upon by the sheriff's department in rural, upstate New York to assist on a developing situation that involves a reclusive Amish settlement and the death of a young girl. Unable to penetrate the wall of silence between the Amish and "English" communities, the sheriff asks Kate to travel to New York, pose as an Amish woman, and infiltrate the community.

Kate's long time love interest, State Agent John Tomasetti, is dead set against her taking on such an unorthodox assignment, knowing she'll have limited communication - and even less in the way of backup. But Kate can't turn her back, especially when the rumor mill boils with disturbing accounts of children in danger. She travels to New York where she's briefed and assumes her new identity as a lone widow seeking a new life.

Kate infiltrates the community and goes deep under cover. In the coming days, she unearths a world built on secrets, a series of shocking crimes, and herself, alone... trapped in a fight for her life.

10 pages, Audio CD

First published July 12, 2016

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About the author

Linda Castillo

101 books4,941 followers
Linda Castillo is the author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling Kate Burkholder mystery series, set in the world of the Amish. The first book, Sworn to Silence, was adapted into a Lifetime original movie titled An Amish Murder starring Neve Campbell as Kate Burkholder. Castillo is the recipient of numerous industry awards including a nomination by the International Thriller Writers for Best Hardcover, a nomination for the Mystery Writers of America’s Sue Grafton Memorial Award, and a nomination for an “Audie Award” for best mystery audiobook. Her work has appeared on numerous bestseller lists and earned a spot on the Boston Globe’s shortlist for best crime novel.

In addition to writing, Castillo’s other passion is horses. She lives on a ranch in Texas with her husband, three Appaloosas, and two feisty, but loveable Blue Heelers.

She loves hearing from readers. Contact her at books@lindacastillo.com.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,474 reviews
Profile Image for MarilynW.
1,068 reviews2,665 followers
November 12, 2021
Among the Wicked (Kate Burkholder #8)
by Linda Castillo, Kathleen McInerney (Narrator )

As a friend of mine, Jonetta, mentioned, each book in the Kate Burkholder series is like Groundhog Day. Not only does Kate not learn anything from her past mistakes, thus repeating them over and over again, she seems to remember almost nothing at all from past books. She manages to forget any relationship progress or conversations she's had with her now live in lover, John, or that Pickles was 76 years old in a previous book but now seems to have Dorian Grey-ed to just turning 75 in this book. With the lack of continuity, these books might work better as stand alones. Especially since Kate incurs horrendous injuries in each book but seems to shake them off as if nothing happened, only to do it all over again in the next book. Her nose should be sitting flat on her face by now, as it's been smashed so many times that I'm not sure how she is still able to breath.

I've complained about Kate not taking backup when she goes into dangerous situations. This time she's going to New York, undercover as a young Amish widow, and she will have no backup at all for anywhere from a week to a month or more. Never mind that she can't help interrogating the Amish she infiltrates and goes so far as to forget her submissive Amish widow woman cover and uses her "Kate Burkholder, Chief of Police" voice when she gets mad at the bad guys. She also can't sew to save her life but joins the local Amish quilting circle and flubs up at trying to make simple potholders. But still, she thinks she is good at this and hasn't blown her cover (imagine all the Amish rolling their eyes as I say this). She went into this job knowing that she should be safe because the Amish are a peace loving people, which might be true in real life, but in the world of Kate Burkholder, they seem to be homicidal, maniac, serial killers, which she seems to forget for each new book.

I'll probably keep going with the series, watching Kate plow head first literally into hard objects, breaking ribs, getting shot, wrecking vehicles, and all the other things she puts her poor body through. I remember her, in a previous book, sitting at a fancy restaurant with John, after she'd had her last face smashup, wondering how horrified John must have been trying to act normal while looking at her purple, bruised, battered face. BTW, he's not supposed to show any concern about her continually getting hurt because she's a cop, he needs to have faith in her decision making skills! Her decision making skills are the problem, though. How is this woman still alive?

Published July 12, 2016 by Macmillan Audio
Profile Image for Kaceey.
1,034 reviews3,552 followers
June 6, 2017
Police chief Kate Burkholder of Painter Mills, Ohio grew up Amish. She left the community years ago to live a secular "English" life. Now a young 15-year-old girl is found frozen to death near a pond in an Amish community in upstate New York. Kate is asked to infiltrate that familiar community to find if there’s more to her death than what appears.

Are people being held against their will? Allegations of child abuse? Exactly what is going on in this secretive society? Kate hopes to find the truth before anyone else gets hurt...including herself. Putting her own life at risk, Kate goes undercover, returning to her roots and blending back into the Amish community as one of their own.

As always, this book mixes together a police procedural along with revealing a closer look at the Amish culture. Linda Castillo does this perfectly. Fast paced, easy to read, held my undivided attention start to end.

Is it the best in the series? Hmmm...no, I didn't think so. But I do enjoy the series and look forward to the next.

Profile Image for Mary Beth .
380 reviews1,614 followers
November 15, 2016

Five Shiny Stars

This author has done it again! I just love this series and I just couldn't put the book down and finished it in two days. It was a powerful, intriguing, heart pounding non stop adrenaline rush. I love it when a book does that to me! I just love Kate. I just love her character.

Kate Burkholder is a tough as nails Chief of Police. She gets a call to go undercover by the sheriff's department in a rural community in New York. There is something strange going on in an Amish community and Kate is perfect for the undercover work. Her Amish upbringing will help her fit in nicely.

I loved Kate and her drive to find the truth. She is determined to find out why a young girl was found dead in the woods . The author does a great job of having Kate blend in to the community as a widow. I must say her living quarters were funny. Imagine an old trailer with pink as the main color, rickety floors, dated furniture and there you have Kate's new home as she lives in the new community. I immediately disliked The Bishop. His character was scary, forceful and very controlling.

The author really played his character up as he becomes more sinister as the story unfolds. I would not like to run into him in a dark alley. His presence is overpowering and he seems to have a hold on the community much like a cult leader would.

Kate's boyfriend Agent John Tomasetti makes it clear that he is not happy that Kate is going undercover. I liked his protectiveness of Kate and was pleasantly surprised when he didn't make to much of a fuss when she decides to go undercover. The town Kate goes to is a typical Amish town but it seems that the town is lacking tourists. I did like the women who welcomed Kate to their sewing circle. were very sweet and made Kate feel at ease. But Kate wonders why there are so many businesses closed? What has caused some of the community to fear The Bishop?

Get ready for a thriller that has lots of action, some violence and lots of surprises. This is one book that will keep you up late into the night as you furiously turn pages to read . It is a top notch edge of your seat mystery that will keep you guessing till the end. Can Kate trust anyone in the town? Will her life be in danger as she unravels the secrets buried deep within the community? This book is a heart pounder for sure.

It is sadly to say that I am already caught up and up to date in this series and I just hope that I don't have to wait to long for the next book.
Profile Image for Diane S ☔.
4,694 reviews14.1k followers
July 6, 2016
I have loved this series from the beginning, but in the last few years have been able to identify more personally. My son having moved into the heart of the Amish, in Goshen, Indiana. They have Amish neighbors on both sides of their houses, even have an Amish telephone booth on their property. Made the acquaintance of these wonderful people, have tasted their food and their delicious homemade ice cream.

In this one Chief Katie Burkholder may have gotten over her head, when she is asked to go undercover in upstate New York, after a young Amish girl is found dead. Unable to get any information from the Amish community there, with their natural suspicion of the English, Kate poses as what she once was, an Amish woman. There she finds a Bishop who his people seem to admire and fear. Things are not as clear cut as they appear, as she soon finds out.

Suspenseful, many twists and turns, secrets, betrayals. Castillo has once again written a fantastic addition to this series, and looking. forward to many more to come.

ARC from NetGalley.
Profile Image for Julie .
4,000 reviews58.9k followers
September 1, 2016
Among the Wicked by Linda Castillo is a 2016 Minotaur publication.

I’ve read several of Linda Castillo’s novels back in the day, but I haven’t read any books from this series. I noticed several of my Goodreads friends reading this one a few weeks back and decided to check it out.

Now, I have yet another series I have to play catch up with, but for those who have not read the previous installments, I’m thinking you can just jump in anywhere along the way, because this one read just fine as a stand alone.

Kate takes a break from her chief of police duties to do an undercover job when a young Amish girl is found dead under suspicious circumstances. With Kate’s past association with the Amish, she’s the perfect person to worm her way into this particular sect, which is more close mouthed than usual. But, her mission proves much more dangerous than she ever could have imagined.

The Amish community appears to be a lot more complicated than one might think, but they can also find themselves susceptible to being taken advantage of. I’m not an expert on the Amish, but I did find this setup very interesting. The suspense was pretty tense and the author wastes no time in putting Kate in a dangerous spot, which kept me on edge at all times.

At first glance, it would seem the mystery is pretty straightforward, and the obvious suspect does not disappoint, being quite sinister and scary, but the plot is more complex that it appears on the surface and there are a few eyebrow raising twists I never saw coming, which clinched the deal for me. I’m a fan from now on and will definitely go back and read the previous books in the series.

Overall, I was pretty impressed with this one and recommend it to fans of the series, for sure, but to anyone who enjoys a good novel of suspense.

4 stars
Profile Image for Anne Goldschrift.
326 reviews398 followers
July 23, 2017
Ich will Band 9!! Jetzt! Sofort! 🙈
Dieser achte Teil war soooo so so gut, ich konnte gar nicht mehr aufhören zu lesen! Spannend von der ersten bis zur letzten Seite und dass es diesmal nicht nur mit einer Amishen Gemeinde etwas zu tun hat, sondern sogar in dieser spielt fand ich super. Nach meinem Geschmack hätte es ruhig noch mehr dazu geben können.
Definitiv eines der besten Bücher der Reihe!
Profile Image for Liz.
1,962 reviews2,410 followers
December 26, 2017

With the 8th in the series, Kate goes undercover in a NY State Amish order. She’s trying to determine the real reason for a young woman freezing to death.

The premise is questionable. It didn’t quite seem plausible that a widow would uproot herself from family to find a different order. There are other parts of the story that don’t ring true. This is the first of the Burkholder series that I noticed this. Credit though, a big twist at the end I never saw coming.

Given that I read Down a Dark Road through netgalley, I’ve now got to sit back and wait for book ten.

Profile Image for Brenda.
725 reviews150 followers
August 23, 2017
This book is set in a fictional village, which in reality is located near Malone, NY, about 170 miles north of me. The story takes place in the winter. One thing you do not want to do here when the temperature is 18° F and the windchill is below zero is fall through the ice! How the Amish survive in these conditions without electricity is a wonder to me. I was chilled just reading about the outdoor adventures Kate Burkholder experiences in this book.

Kate agrees to go undercover in an Amish community to find out why a 15 year old girl was killed. As a former Amish and current police chief, she is uniquely qualified. Linda Castillo has given Kate the opportunity to see what her life might have been like if she'd stayed Amish, and Kate gets a little nostalgic. The reader gets a wonderful look at the lives of Amish women.

Don't get all cozy, though. There is a murder and other illegal activities that put Kate in danger. If you're a fan, you know how dogged Kate is! She will not quit until she figures out what's going on. The tension increases as the story progresses and reaches the conclusion.

This is a great addition to the series. We see a little bit of Kate's crew in Painters Mill, Ohio, and John Tomasetti, but this book works very well as a stand alone. I loved it!
Profile Image for Barbara.
1,318 reviews4,841 followers
October 11, 2021

In this 8th book in the 'Kate Burkholder' series, the Chief of Police goes undercover. The book can be read as a standalone, but familiarity with the characters is a bonus.


As the story opens Kate Burkholder - Chief of Police in Painters Mill, Ohio - gets a visit from two law enforcement officers from New York State.

Sheriff Dan Suggs and Investigator Frank Betancourt are concerned about the suspicious death of Rachel Esh, a 15-year-old Amish girl from Roaring Springs, New York. An autopsy showed that Rachel had drugs in her system and had undergone an abortion....very unusual for an Amish girl.

Moreover there are rumors of 'bad things' going on among the Roaring Springs Amish, who recently got a new Bishop named Eli Shrock. It seems that Bishop Shrock is much stricter than his predecessor and may be using harsh punishments to enforce his rules.

The officers can't investigate any of this, however, because the Amish people keep to themselves and don't speak to the "English" police.

The New York cops, feeling particularly concerned about Amish children and teens in Roaring Springs, need an undercover agent to infiltrate and investigate. Kate is the perfect person for the job since she grew up in an Amish family until the age of 18 and can speak Pennsylvania Dutch. (Note: Kate's reasons for leaving the Amish community are discussed in previous books in the series.)

So Kate borrows some Amish clothing from her sister, packs up a couple of guns and a cell phone, and heads for Roaring Springs. Kate's boyfriend, Agent John Tomasetti, disapproves of Kate's potentially dangerous undercover assignment but she promises to be careful. And what can happen in an Amish town after all? As things turn out, quite a bit.

As soon as Kate arrives in Roaring Springs she dons her Amish clothes and makes it her business to visit the Amish run coffee shop and quilt store. She introduces herself as Kate Miller from Ohio, a recent widow who's looking for a more orthodox Amish community, like Bishop Shrock's.

Kate rents a small trailer home whose one advantage is electricity (which the Amish don't use). Kate then buys a used scooter, hides her gun and cell phone under her clothes, and goes about her business. She frequents the coffee shop.....

.....joins a quilting circle.....

.....and attends an Amish church service.

Kate takes every opportunity to talk to people and ask questions - trying to scope out the situation and find out about Rachel.

Kate quickly senses that something's wrong in Roaring Springs. The people seem unusually furtive and paranoid, and some sport odd injuries. In addition, while walking through the woods one night Kate comes across two Amish men on snowmobiles, wearing ski masks and doling out rough treatment to two female passengers.

When Kate reports these occurrences to the Bishop, his behavior is DECIDEDLY OFF. Soon afterwards Kate experiences some rough treatment herself, for being a 'nosy Amish woman.'

Kate periodically calls Sheriff Suggs and tells him about all the suspicious behavior and violent occurrences.

The law enforcement officials are concerned for Kate's safety but she's determined to stick it out...fearful that the local youngsters are in danger. Kate valiantly carries on and - in some exciting scenes - puts her life in danger while she tries to discover what's going on and who's involved.

I like this series, both for the mystery elements and the descriptions of Amish life and culture. That said, I was a little disappointed with this book. Most of the criminals are pretty easy to identify and the major crime is one which shows up a lot in books and TV these days.....thus not too original. Also, the perps get caught well before the end of the book, which then moseys along to the last page.



Still, this is an enjoyable book, recommended to mystery fans - especially people who like the Kate Burkholder series.

Thanks to Netgalley, the author, and the publisher for a copy of this book.

You can follow my book reviews at: http://reviewsbybarbsaffer.blogspot.com/
Profile Image for "Avonna.
1,125 reviews303 followers
June 30, 2016
I am never disappointed when I get my hands on a Kate Burkholder story by Linda Castillo. Among The Wicked is the eighth book and there are three novellas. It is as strong as the first in the series! Ms. Castillo’s writing style pulls me in and keeps me reading as Kate suffers the trials and tribulations of solving another crime involving the Amish. The climax had me stunned with a great plot twist!

Police Chief Kate Burkholder is asked to go on leave in Painters Mill, OH and go undercover as a plain widow in an Amish community in upstate New York to discover what happened to a young Amish girl found frozen to death and the possible abuse of children. As Kate becomes familiar with the Amish of this community, she is puzzled by the extreme reverence and/or real fear of the families towards their Bishop. She becomes aware of disappearances, physical punishments and strange youth counselling by or with the blessing of Bishop Schrock which would never happen in any other Amish community.

Kate’s questions not only focus on the possible crimes in the community, but are self-directed as well. She and BCI Agent Frank Tomasetti’s personal lives are moving along well, but she misses the sense of community the Amish women experience. She has to deal with her feelings about her Amish roots, which need to be made without blinders to keep herself safe and alive in the present. The evil in this Amish community is more than anyone was expecting.

Thank you very much to St. Martin’s Press and Net Galley for giving me a free eARC in exchange for an honest review. I love Kate Burkholder!
Profile Image for Jonetta.
2,183 reviews893 followers
November 12, 2021
When a young girl is found dead in a rural Amish community in upstate New York, the state Bureau of Criminal Investigations (BCI) in conjunction with the county sheriff reaches out to Painter’s Mill Police Chief Kate Burkholder for help in infiltrating the community. It’s a strongly orthodox sect that has little to no interaction with the “Englishers” within their town and are becoming more and more isolated. Kate’s unique background positions her perfectly to get the answers eluding law enforcement from investigating the murder and other issues of concern.

Kate going undercover as an Amish widow in a strange community and virtually no backup…what could go wrong? She’s living in a squalid trailer with no heat and two guns and a cell phone as her protection. It doesn’t take long for Kate to get in the crosshairs of Bishop Eli Shrock, the self appointed leader of the sect. While she does a really good job of immersing herself back into being Amish, her nosiness and questioning made her stand out too much. I could see danger everywhere and she always seemed exposed and at risk.

If you were reading this book without having read the others in the series, it would probably be exciting and fresh. As I’ve mentioned in the past, the continued pattern of putting Kate in life threatening positions of her own doing is getting stale and unrealistic. I liked the story and didn’t love it for that reason. That said, it became a big issue for boyfriend Agent John Tomasetti and hopefully the honest conversation they had about this very issue will put an end to this stuff. Regarding the case, I’d figured out early on most of the evil happening in that community, including the surprise twist. That didn’t detract from me enjoying the investigation because the missing details were important. Here’s hoping that Tomasetti’s (and my) concerns change these stories going forward. No matter, the narrator’s storytelling skills and overall performance still make these books pretty compelling. 3.5 stars

Posted on Blue Mood Café
Profile Image for Thomas.
712 reviews172 followers
September 23, 2017
4 stars
This was an enjoyable, fast paced read. I finished at midnight last night, unable to stop reading. It is book 8 in the series, but worked ok for me as a stand alone. Kate Burkholder grew up in an Amish community, but left as a teenager, earned a GED, and got a part time job answering the phone at a police substation. She went to community college at night and got a 2 year degree in criminal justice. She has worked her way up to homicide detective in the Columbus PD , when she is offered the job of chief in her hometown, because of her Amish background.
In this book, she is asked by NY state police to go undercover and find out why a 15 year old girl turned up dead in an Amish community. She agrees and early on the bad guys are revealed, although there is a twist at the end that I didn't expect. I am retired law enforcement and thought the cop portrayal was pretty accurate.
This book was a Goodreads giveaway, and I thank the publisher, #stmartinspress
Profile Image for Phrynne.
3,160 reviews2,009 followers
November 9, 2021
So we arrive at book eight in the series and find that Kate still has to learn not to leap first and think about it later. In Among the Wicked she chooses to go undercover, assuming the role of an Amish widow. She has very little preparation, a weak cover story, minimal protection and she is going into a dangerous setting in a small community where everyone knows everyone else's business. What on earth could go wrong?

To be honest I spent most of the book rolling my eyes at her naivety or nervously anticipating what disaster would befall her next. Luckily she displays superhuman strength in, among other things, escaping from being locked up and recovering from freezing temperatures.

Okay, enough with the criticism. The story was also exciting and very readable, there was a remarkable and totally unexpected twist at the end and the Amish way of life was well represented. Tomasetti popped up from time to time but I did miss the usual characters from Painter's Mill. I am still sufficiently enthused to carry on with the series.
Profile Image for Brenda.
4,027 reviews2,628 followers
November 30, 2021
The undercover assignment that Chief of Police Kate Burkholder was so suited for, was in Roaring Springs, upstate New York in an Amish community that seemed to have lost its way. The death of sixteen-year-old Rachel Esh was the beginning, and Kate’s years of being Amish and speaking Pennsylvania Dutch made her perfect for the dangerous assignment. Agent John Tomasetti was against the plan but knew she’d have backup…

As Kate, in her Amish disguise, got to know the people in the community, she sensed the fear and uncertainty of those she spoke to. But as events accelerated and danger mounted, Kate and her police contacts had no idea that what they would find would be worse than anyone imagined. Kate was in danger, determined to see it through. But would she survive the outcome?

Among the Wicked is the 8th in the Kate Burkholder series by Linda Castillo and it was breathtaking. As I flew through the pages, I wondered what would happen next. Evil in its worse form, and those doing it don’t want to be found out. Kate takes a lot of risks but is a good, strong and determined woman and cop. Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Jean.
716 reviews20 followers
September 28, 2016
One of my reservations about Linda Castillo’s Kate Burkholder series has been that there seem to be an inordinate number of murders occurring among the Amish in the area around the small town of Painters Mill, Ohio. In Among the Wicked, the eighth of the series, Castillo skirts that issue when Chief Burkholder agrees to go undercover in upstate New York to investigate the suspicious death of a teenage Amish girl. Local law enforcement personnel have been unable to make any headway in the case due to the suspicions fostered by the strict bishop who takes a hard line on Amish-English relationships.

Fearing for her safety, Kate’s lover BCI Agent John Tomasetti argues against her accepting the case. But Kate is a dedicated officer with a strong commitment to finding answers to end a threatening situation, even at risk to her own life. As a fellow lawman, Tomasetti understands this; as a loving partner, he is scared. Truthfully, so is Kate, but she forges ahead. It’s been eighteen years since she donned Amish garb and lived the plain life. How will she feel? Can she pull it off without tipping her hand?

Taking the name of Kate Miller, she quickly meets members of the Amish community. She finds some of them to be warm and welcoming – to a point. There are some things they refuse to discuss, such as the death of Rachel Esh or their concerns about the bishop, Eli Shrock. Will Kate eventually manage to find anyone who will confide in her about the girl’s death? What about Bishop Shrock? There are those who seem in awe of him – or is it fear? Others are openly disdainful, but they are few. Can Kate get them to talk? Or will Tomasetti’s concerns be realized?

Although she is posing as a childless widowed Amish woman, Kate is not entirely off the grid. She has a cell phone, which she is able to charge in her rustic rental trailer. She also has a couple of handguns. She checks in daily with local sheriff, Dan Suggs and New York BCI senior investigator Frank Betancourt. Other than that, though, she’s on her own. Having never gone undercover, she must rely on her experience as a former Amish person, and on her investigative training and her instincts.

Kate has several late night forays into the woods to the site where Rachel’s body was found and to Shrock’s property, where she learns some surprising things. Will these discoveries come back to haunt her? Upstate New York in the winter is cold, snowy, and unfriendly. I love when the setting plays a role in the story, and this is something that Castillo does well.

Not all of Kate’s discoveries are bad, however. Among the women of the sewing circle – which made me chuckle because Kate cannot sew – she finds community and friendship that she hadn’t even realized she was missing. It brought me back to my high school and college years when I was involved in church groups. The women kindly overlook her sewing shortcomings and even seem to forgive her overt curiosity and tend to be gossipy and neighborly.

Back to the question about danger – in each of the Burkholder novels so far, Kate has managed to get herself in and out of jams. So it came as no surprise to me when her poking and prodding got her into more than one fix. There is one whopper of a twist, however, that I didn’t see coming, making Among the Wicked perhaps one of my favorite Burkholder novels yet.

5 stars

Profile Image for Susanne.
1,157 reviews36.5k followers
June 12, 2020
3.5 Stars (rounded down)

Peace is hard to come by when Kate Burkholder investigates!

When Kate Burkholder is asked to go undercover in an Amish Settlement in Upstate New York as a Amish Widow to uncover the death of a young teenager, Kate jumps in with both feet. The fact that she will be on her own and have no back up, worries Tomasetti more than it does her.

Somehow, infiltrating the Amish Community comes easy to “Kate Miller” as she gets them to confide in her immediately about the religious sect, the death of the girl in question, the bishop and abuse of those who disobey him.

It’s no shock that this spells danger for Kate. Can she solve this mystery in time before it’s too late?

“Among the Wicked” by Linda Castillo is a solid addition to the Kate Burkholder series and though I enjoyed it, it wasn’t my favorite. I personally had a hard time believing that the Amish in Upstate New York, would be comfortable enough with “Kate Miller”l to start spilling secrets within the first day or two of her arrival. Though Kate mentioned that the Amish were very friendly and forgiving throughout this novel, I questioned this. Kate’s own brother and sister still haven’t forgiven her for leaving the Amish way of life and several of the Amish families in Painters Mill have been less than friendly to her since her excommunication. This, therefore, felt contradictory to what has been portrayed throughout the series and felt false. Though Kate is a warm, kindhearted woman, I just didn’t buy into the premise of this story, hence the reason for my lower rating.

Thank you to my local library for the audiobook.

Published on Goodreads on 6.12.20.
Profile Image for Tina.
2,389 reviews1 follower
November 11, 2021
This is an Amish Suspense, and this is the 8th book in the Kate Burkholder series. I have to say I think this is my favorite book in the series so far that I have read. Kate's goes undercover in has an Amish widow to help solve a girl's murder and some other weird stuff that has been happening in an old order Amish group. I have to say I really love to see Kate living has an Amish woman again. Great book and the suspense is so great. I also did not see the big twist in this book coming.
Profile Image for Brenda.
4,027 reviews2,628 followers
October 2, 2016
When Chief of Police Kate Burkholder was called into a meeting in her office at the Painters Mill police station, she had no idea her life was about to change in a way she had never envisioned. The rural community of Roaring Springs had had some strange happenings in their Amish community with the latest being the death of a young fifteen year old girl under suspicious circumstances. Agent Betancourt’s idea was for Kate to go undercover as an Amish woman and infiltrate the community. Kate hadn’t been Amish for eighteen years, but the memory was all there…

Kate’s cover was as a recent widow needing a new life and new direction – the winter was a bad one; snow and freezing conditions, while her back-up was non-existent. She was basically on her own. Kate’s covert investigation uncovered shocking secrets – the Amish were tight-lipped but Kate knew there were terrible crimes being committed. As the danger intensified, Kate knew she was close to finding answers – but the determination of others to keep those secrets meant only one thing. Would Kate make it out alive?

Among the Wicked is the 8th in the Kate Burkholder series by Linda Castillo and is just as gripping and intense as the previous novels! Fast paced action blended with well-crafted characters; ice and snow and an eerie setting; this novel kept me enthralled from start to finish. I love the series and am sad I now have to wait for the next instalment! Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Doug Bradshaw.
257 reviews219 followers
August 4, 2016
This was my first Kate Burkholder story, her 8th. I breezed through it fairly quickly and I enjoyed it. There is a certain coziness to her writing, Kate's relationship to her boyfriend, her everyday comments about the world and how things work, all done in a way that draws you into her world, like a long time friend that you know and can trust.

Having grown up as Amish and as an experienced police officer, she is the prefect choice to go into an Amish village undercover, to see what is going on.

I enjoyed the way she insinuates herself into the lives of the locals, how vulnerable she becomes without transportation or easy access to help, while living in an old smelly mobile home. But as the title indicates, there is wickedness in this little community and it takes some pretty brave heroics on her part to stick her neck out to solve the riddle of missing people, pregnant young girls and death.

I'd go to 4 stars except that I felt that some of the story was a little too formulaic and sometimes put together a little too quickly.

But I'd read another of her books if I were book-less in Mexico on vacation and it was for sale in the sundry shop. I'd compare it to watching an NCIS episode on TV. Pretty good and a viable and interesting story.
Profile Image for Angela DeSilva.
151 reviews189 followers
August 17, 2016
This was my first read by Linda Castillo and surely not my last. I was completely engrossed in this story even though it was not at all gory, it was just so interesting I needed to keep reading. I like my thrillers graphic and gory so I am amazed how the story kept my attention, it was just great writing. I started out with #8 in the series as it was a new release, but I am definitely going to go back and start from book one. I had no trouble reading this as a standalone, though.

Kate Burkholder, Chief of Police, is chosen as the best person to go undercover and investigate the murder of a 15 year-old girl in an Amish community. Kate was born and raised Amish leaving the fold at age 18 and was perfect for the assignment, as she knew the lanuage and everything and she pulled it off very well. I read a lot of crime books and I absolutely did not guess the shocking twists that blew the story wide open towards the end. It was very good writing! I really enjoyed this book a lot and plan to finish the series reading her backlist. The story was quite suspensful and I enjoyed learning about theAmish very much. I hope the rest of the books in the series are just as good. 5 out of 5 stars from me.
Profile Image for Julia.
274 reviews41 followers
February 6, 2017
This is the 8th installment of the Kate Burkholder series.

Kate Burkholder, chief of police of Painter Mill OH, is asked to assist in a case in upstate NY in which a young Amish girl is found dead. As Kate was raised in the Painter Mill Amish community, the NY state sheriff asks her to assist in the case posing undercover as an Amish widow. As a new widow to the community, Kate will have to insinuate herself into a society that keeps itself separate from it's "English" neighbors.

This book kept me on the edge of my seat. Kate is a strong confident character, and she won't back down from a case. Posing as an Amish widow, Kate is totally alone with no backup except for the local sheriff she checks in with, who is at least an hour away. She is extremely vulnerable to the dangers in the area as she tries to solve this case.

I found myself sympathizing for Kate a little in this book. She left the Amish faith when she was a teenager and is happy with her life; but as she works this case - she is surprised to find that she enjoys, almost misses the camaraderie of the Amish women she meets.

I enjoyed this book, and am looking forward to the next on in the series.
Profile Image for Jim.
551 reviews83 followers
May 12, 2019
Kate Burkholder's reputation is growing. The Chief of Police in Painters Mill, Ohio gets a visit from a pair of law enforcement officers from upstate New York. 15-year-old Rachel Esh, a Amish girl from Roaring Springs, New York was found frozen to death. It could have been a tragic accident but she had drugs in her system and had recently undergone an abortion. Sheriff Dan Suggs and Investigator Frank Betancourt are suspicious but are unable to penetrate the Amish community. They want Kate, who left the Amish as a teenager, to go undercover as an Amish woman and try and learn anything she can.

Roaring Springs recently got a new Amish bishop named Eli Shrock who is a lot stricter than his predecessor and may be using harsh punishments to enforce the rules. Many of the Amish have left Roaring Springs taking with them their businesses. As a result tourism has fallen. With the new bishops strict rules and punishments there is also a concern about the safety and welfare of the Amish children and teens. Local law enforcement is stymied because the Amish don't trust the "Englishers".

Borrowing some of her sisters clothes Kate Burkholder travels to Roaring Springs and becomes Kate Miller, a childless widow. She starts to insert herself into the Amish community. Meeting other Amish, going to services, joining a sewing circle. Kate can dress Amish. She can speak Pennsylvania Dutch and is familiar with the Amish customs but she cannot sew. Her new friends do not hold this against her or comment. As she starts to make friends she reminisces about what might have been had she not left the Amish when she was young.

Kate quickly senses something is not right. People seem secretive, furtive, paranoid. Some have odd injuries. Some have left Roaring Springs, supposedly to assist Amish in other communities, but are never heard from again. Kate has regular contact with Sheriff Dan Suggs to keep him updated on her progress but for the most part she is on her own. She gets into trouble for being a 'nosy Amish woman.' When she tries to talk to the bishop she finds his response "off". The ending, as usual, is a climatic scene in which Kate finds herself in a life threatening situation.

Kate's live in boyfriend, State Agent John Tomasetti, is against her taking this assignment. There are few surprises with regards to who the bad guys are. What set this story apart was the change of location from Painters Mill to Roaring Springs ... and Kate's becoming Amish. In other books in the series the reader looked at the Amish from the outside. In this story the reader joins Kate in living with the Amish.

One of my favorite series. I like the characters and setting and am looking forward to reading Down a Dark Road.

Profile Image for Pat.
2,310 reviews395 followers
May 6, 2019
This was another excellent instalment in the Kate Burkholder series. Kate is the Chief of Police in small town Painter's Mill which includes a significant Amish settlement. Kate herself grew up Amish but has since left the fold. She is contacted by the Sheriff of a small town in update New York regarding the death of a 15 year old Amish girl. The very closed community is not being very forthcoming with information so he asks Kate to go undercover as an Amish woman and poke around a bit.

Despite nothing untoward happening for quite some time there is a definite sense of creeping menace. Clearly things are not okay in this community but Kate is unable to quite put her finger on what is wrong. She soon comes to suspect it all revolves around the new bishop, Shrock, who seems to have the Amish either in his thrall or quaking in their boots. Kate decides to continue poking around but she gets too close and is soon in mortal danger. The revelations, when they come, are shocking indeed.

Linda Castillo has not written a bad book (I mean over all her books) You would think that nothing much exciting would happen in an Amish community but every book is a suspenseful page turner. I also like how empathetic Kate is and how patient and caring she is with the Amish. Obviously her background is a huge asset in this regard. I have left this series alone for too long. Its time to catch up.
Profile Image for DeB.
969 reviews246 followers
October 15, 2016
Linda Castillo's suspense series set in Amish country has been a favourite of mine. Among the Wicked #8, her latest novel, is compulsively readable as Chief of Police Officer Kate Burkholder goes undercover to sniff out the rotten doings in a secluded Amish community far from her home in Painters Mill.

Always, Castillo's novels retain immense respect for the faith and culture of the Amish while addressing the human frailties which either create susceptibilities or dark traits, to criminal acts. In the midst of a situation where fear and victimization seem rampant, Kate Burkholder realizes the essential goodness of these hardworking people, who have been taken advantage of by a powerful nefarious character.

Among the Wicked gets top marks for being highly suspenseful. The driving sense of purpose - to right a wrong- to aid the Amish who fold in upon themselves in crisis and push police out- made this story even more compelling. Castillo is masterful with the genre of literary suspense. Five stars!
Profile Image for Kris - My Novelesque Life.
4,639 reviews191 followers
May 4, 2019
I love Linda Castillo's Kate Burkholder series and last year I binged read the series and then felt some withdrawal. I was very EXCITED to hear that a new book would be out this summer and it made my day when I received an ARC of Among the Wicked. I didn't get a chance to get my hands on the novella, Seeds of Deception (#7.5) before this book. From my past experience with the novellas they do not connect to the next book. They are separate stories.

2016; Minotaur Book/ St. Martin's Press

When the dead body of a young girl, Rachel is found in upstate rural New York, Kate Burkholder, Chief of Police, is visited by the Sheriff for her help in the case. Rachel was Amish and the community she hails from has closed ranks around their Bishop, that believes in the old ways. They need Kate to go undercover into the Amish community and get some answers to what happened to Rachel.

Kate is the only one in law enforcement that is fluent in the language and can blend in with Amish. She borrows clothes from her sister and sets up a story for herself. As she meets the women in the community she senses that they are keeping a dangerous secret...that might be worse than just murder. As Kate starts to ask questions she is warned to back off or people will be hurt. How can Kate abandon her assignment when rumours of children being harmed and members disappearing is ongoing? But can she help those in trouble before she is silenced?

Linda Castillo has not written a bad novel in the Kate Burkholder series. I have rated them all as four-stars and enjoyed each full-length book. (My only concern with the novellas is that they are not long enough.) This book has less of her team and John Tomasetti in it, but I did like that we got to see Kate in another environment. Kate had to act the part of being Amish at every moment she was with someone. It was interesting to see what parts of being Amish she misses and what parts she is happy to have shed. Her relating to the Amish Community was also a different part to her. The previous books had her relating to the Amish as an outsider, former-Amish and a police officer. The crime(s) in this book were really terrifying and I have to say the suspense was crazy that I stayed up to finish the book. I highly recommend this series and this book!

***I received an eARC from NETGALLEY***

My Novelesque Blog
Profile Image for Susan.
1,062 reviews200 followers
July 30, 2017
One of my favorite things about this series is learning about the Amish culture. Police Chief Kate Burkholder was raised Amish before she left the community. In this book she is approached by New York police to go undercover in an Amish community in northern New York, 20 miles from the Canadian border. A teenager turns up dead and there is concern for the children in the group.

Kate is uniquely qualified with her knowledge of the language and culture so she accepts the assignment. The group has a new charismatic Bishop who adheres to the strict rules of the religion.
Whispers have been heard of people being punished for not following the rules. Is it an Amish community or a cult?

As Kate settles in her undercover role, she finds things even more disturbing than previously thought. Darker and darker secrets emerge and Kate is really by herself, cut off by the area's remoteness and Amish rules and things get very dangerous.

I really like this series and learning about Amish culture. It's good entertainment.
Profile Image for Robin.
1,684 reviews60 followers
November 30, 2017
Police Chief Kate Burkholder is contacted by a member of the New York State Police. He told her that they are investigating the death of an Amish girl in upstate New York. The girl belonged to a closed Amish community. No one in the community is willing to talk to the police. The police would like Kate to go undercover as an Amish woman who moves into the community. Since Kate grew up Amish, she knows the language and the customs. She knows there will be limited communication and no transportation for her. Kate is hoping she can get in and out in a matter of days, but she soon discovers that things are not what they seem.

Another excellent addition to Linda Castillo's Kate Burkholder series. Kate moves into the small town posing as an Amish widow and quickly makes her way around town gathering information about the dead girl whose body was found frozen in the woods. This book is a page-turner. I stayed up late into the night so I could finish it. My rating: 5 Stars.
Profile Image for Jess☺️.
459 reviews80 followers
July 12, 2018
Among the wicked is book 8 in the Kate Burkholder series and I'm going to repeat myself once again I know but this series is absolutely great.
This book bothered me a bit more because of the cult feel to it and I hate when people think they have that much control over others but putting all that aside this book was full of oh my gosh moments, moments when you had to put it down to breath and that clinging to the edge of your seat moments to.
I recommend this book but definitely this whole series so far 😃
Profile Image for AH.
2,005 reviews370 followers
August 4, 2016
This was my first foray into the Kate Burkholder world and I am sure that I will find the time to go back and read the previous books. I have never really read any kind of books about the Amish, so that aspect really intrigued me and kept my interest. I also loved that the book took place not far from where I live in areas that I may visit, which adds a touch of realism to a book of fiction.

First off, don’t let the fact that this is book 8 in a series put you off – especially you OCD types out there who absolutely must read books in order. Among the Wicked can be easily read as a standalone book without any loss of critical information. Actually, the fact that it was part of a series made me happy that I now have something to get back to at a later date.

I was quite fascinated with the Amish side of things. I’ve always wondered about their community and while this book does not purport to be a guide to the Amish, it did describe their simple way of life quite effectively. I loved the fact that Kate was raised Amish herself, but that she chose to life away from their community. I enjoyed how Kate was able to insert herself into the community and how she gained the trust of the women around her.

This book kept me glued to my seat. I think I devoured it over the course of 2 days. And what an unexpected twist – I never saw that coming.

My only criticism is that Kate spent a lot of time out in the cold walking, riding a scooter, and sometimes even without the requisite amount of warm clothing and foot covering. Winters can be bitterly cold and it amazed me that she never suffered from frostbite.

Fantastic Read. Highly recommended.

Review posted on Badass Book Reviews. Check it out!

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a review copy of this book.
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