Paul L. Gaus lives with his wife Madonna in Wooster, Ohio, just a few miles north of the world’s largest and most varied settlement of Amish and Mennonite people.  His knowledge of the culture of the “Plain People” stems from over thirty years of extensive exploration of the narrow blacktop roads and lesser gravel lanes of this pastoral community, which includes several dozen sects of Anabaptists living closely among the so-called “English” or “Yankee” non-Amish people of the county.  Paul lectures widely about the Amish people he has met and about the lifestyles, culture and religion of this remarkable community of Christian pacifists. 

P.L. Gaus

P.L. Gaus



Book Cover Stars for Lydia


First death—an accident or a homicide? Second death—a murder or a suicide?

Events unfold quickly on a single Monday, the first day of classes for Professor Michael Branden’s new semester. The tragedies envelope a Schwartzentruber sect, the most conservative of all Amish peoples, and Branden and Sheriff Bruce Robertson must wrestle with cultural and religious barriers in order to investigate. To make matters worse, a mother of seven Schwartzentruber children has apparently left with her youngest daughter Esther, in order to escape her dangerously depressed husband. Has she really left six children behind?