Four women with hidden secrets form a group to combat deceit and solve murders.
The ladies of Miracle Springs work in mysterious ways. Former librarian Nora Pennington, owner of Miracle Books, helps people deal with their troubles by recommending specific reading material. Hester Winthrop, owner and baker at the Gingerbread House, creates scones individually tailored to different people’s needs. Estella Sadler, owner of Magnolia Salon and Spa, is a high-maintenance gal with a bad reputation with men. Quiet June Dixon works at the Miracle Springs thermal pools. All are haunted by terrible events that continue to cast long shadows. The ladies’ passing acquaintance with one another deepens when Neil Parrish, a man who’d chatted with Nora and bought a scone from Hester, falls or is pushed in front of a train. After Sheriff Todd calls them in for interviews because they’d all spoken with the dead man, they confide in each other their suspicions that Parrish was murdered despite the sheriff’s ready assumption that his death was suicide. Parrish was one of the partners in Pine Ridge Properties, a new housing development going up near Mineral Springs, and June, who talked to him at the pools, said he seemed to have regrets about the project. Incensed by the way the misogynist sheriff treats them, the ladies form a secret society to investigate. When Nora expresses interest in buying a house in Pine Ridge, she’s surprised to learn that she qualifies for a loan from the local bank run by the sheriff’s brother. As the ladies investigate, another partner in the suspicious building project is killed, and Estella is arrested for his murder. Now the friends are even more determined to discover the truth.
Adams (Peach Pies and Alibis, 2013) kicks off a new series featuring strong women, a touch of romance and mysticism, and both the cunning present-day mystery and the slowly revealed secrets of the intriguing heroines’ pasts.