Murder interrupts the Halloween festivities at Excelsior, Minn.
Leona Cunningham has two strikes against her: She owns a microbrewery and practices Wicca, the ancient religion many mistake for devil worship. When a local drunk who’d been banned from her establishment turns up dead of unknown causes, gossip blames Leona. It’s up to sleuthing needlework-shop owner Betsy Devonshire (Thai Die, 2008, etc.) to find the killer. Before his untimely decease, alcoholic Ryan McMurphy had been slated to drive a restored fire truck in the Halloween parade. His wife had recently thrown him out, and he’d been staying in the basement sewing room of Shelly Donohue, whose live-in love Harvey Fogelman was his old friend. Although Leona suspected Ryan of trashing her porch, she was far from the only one with a reason to wish him dead. Ryan’s drunken driving caused a severe injury to one of his friends. His cousin was furious that he ruined her daughter’s chances to get into the Naval Academy. He was blackmailing Harvey. And his wife is now in line for a $2 million insurance payout. Even after her gay friend Godwin’s near-fatal experience with dry ice gives Betsy the clue to the cause of death, she still needs to figure out who did the deed.
Fans will enjoy the needlework lore, the included pattern and the ongoing adventures, pleasant if not exactly exciting, of Betsy, Godwin and their pals.