A Colorado widow discovers that everything she knew about her husband’s death is wrong.
There are two reasons successful author Cat Latimer has turned the Victorian house she inherited from her recently deceased ex-husband into a writers’ retreat: because she’d like to make some extra money and because she enjoys mentoring people. Shauna Mary Clodagh, her partner in the enterprise, has culinary talents that delight her guests. The two women moved to Aspen Hills after the death of Cat’s ex-husband, Michael, who never changed his will. Cat’s current boyfriend, Seth Howard, was her high school sweetheart, and his talents as a handyman have helped turn the house into a welcoming haven. Even though her first two writers’ retreats ended in murder (Fatality by Firelight, 2017), Cat hopes that all will be peaceful this time. Alas, Shauna’s wealthy boyfriend, Kevin Shield, is found fatally poisoned on his ranch, making Shauna, who’d brought him stew for dinner, a prime suspect. Kevin had recently given her a ring, but he seemed to be slowing things down. Only after his death, however, does Shauna learn that he had three children by two former relationships. As she slowly goes through Michael’s papers, Cat is pressured by Michael’s boss, the head of the economics department at the college where he taught, to turn them over. If Cat’s Uncle Pete weren’t the head of the local police department, Shauna would surely be arrested for buying the rat poison that may have killed Kevin. In addition to trying to prove her friend innocent, Cat will need to learn a great deal more about Michael’s hidden life.
Cahoon’s third has too many storylines that reference her first two to be very approachable on its own. Newcomers may feel a bit lost despite the interesting plot and quirky characters.