Librarian Penny Penelope has been found dead at the town's bookstore, Brickley's Books. She was struck several times in the head by an axe and based on the lack of blood at the scene, it is clear that her body was moved and later dumped at the bookstore. It is bad enough to have a dead body in a bookstore on any day, but even worse when the Fair is about to open and the bookstore is set to host Miss Holly LaFrance who will be signing copies of her new book. The very same book that was blasted in a scathing syndicated review column that happened to run in the local paper today.
Retired detective Brady Kincaid is needed and despite some misgivings about being paired with Officer Alice Drinker, he is glad to assist. He misses serious police work and this case intrigues him from his first visit to the crime scene. As the fair opens and the investigation moves forward, they find that the killer wasn't the only one with secrets to hide. Public image is one thing but as so often the case, private reality is far different.
The focus in this “cozy” style murder mystery is primarily on Brady Kincaid and the case as well as some important decisions about his future that he needs to make. As such, there is less romance than in the previous book. Not to say there is not a romantic element, there certainly is, but the primary element in this novel is the mystery.
This report prepared by Kevin R. Tipple