Not even her impending wedding can stop an intrepid sleuth from investigating a murder.
Delaney Nichols literally runs into an older gentleman just outside the door of the church she’s visiting in hopes of convincing the Rev. Nisa Bellows to officiate at her nuptials. Delaney, an American who works at the Cracked Spine bookstore in Edinburgh (Lost Books and Old Bones, 2018, etc.) collating its enormous and often mysterious collection, plans to marry drop-dead-handsome pub owner Tom Shannon in a week. When Delaney finds a pack of Loch Ness Monster cards after the collision, Nisa says that they probably belong to the man Delaney ran into, Norval Fraser, whose obsession with the monster has led him to amass a huge anecdotal archive. Norval, who thinks Nessie took his father, asks Delaney if she'll accept his paperwork and continue the search herself. Back at the Cracked Spine, larger-than-life Texan Angus Murdoch arrives with a rare and valuable book he claims his grandfather stole from the store 20 years ago. But when owner Edwin MacAlister arrives, he has no recollection of the alleged theft. When he’s unable to get in touch with his great-nephew, Gavin, Norval asks Delaney to accompany him to Gavin’s apartment, where they find him stabbed to death. The police arrest Norval but have him hospitalized because they’re unsure of his mental state. Delaney, who knows that a Ponzi-like scheme Gavin was running had earned him many enemies, is distraught when her wedding dress vanishes in a store closing just as her parents and brother arrive in town for the wedding. She takes her jet-lagged family on a quick trip to Loch Ness, then her taxi-driving friend and landlord takes them sightseeing while she continues her quest to clear up all the mysteries before her wedding day.
The material on the eternally enigmatic Loch Ness Monster is a good deal more absorbing than the subpar mystery.