A family dedicated to animal rescue find themselves involved in murder.
On a mission to pick up Stewie, an elderly Pomeranian whose even older owner is heading for an extended care facility, Liz Denton and her son, Ben, spot a van belonging to another rescue group run by Courtney Shaw, who’s not above making a buck by charging high fees for pets. Stewie’s owner, Timothy Fuller, who’d called Liz to find his beloved dog a great home, orders his nurse to take him indoors, leaving Liz and Courtney to negotiate in front of Tim Jr. and his wife, who just want the dog gone. When the nurse suggests that one of them come back later for Stewie, Liz follows Courtney home, leaving Ben to make the acquaintance of Selena Shriver, the bikini-clad neighbor, until she returns. Courtney finally agrees to let Liz take Stewie, but when she returns for him and Ben, she learns that Timothy’s dead and Ben’s been arrested for his murder. Since he’d never met Timothy before, Ben seems an unlikely suspect. But the police have a witness who saw Ben enter the house, and there’s blood on his shirt, which sports his name in large letters. Ignoring her veterinarian husband, Manny, who advises her to trust in the law, Liz starts sleuthing on her own. The rumor that Timothy had a large sum of money hidden away on his property generates more suspects who might have stabbed him for refusing to disclose his hidden stash. Liz’s daughter, Amelia, a college student, has been acting strangely recently, but her secret proves surprisingly helpful in proving Ben innocent.
Erickson (Death by Eggnog, 2017, etc.) kicks off a new series that combines irresistibly cute pets, a tangled plot, and a pretty obvious killer.