A vicar needs the help of his pets to stay out of prison.
Francis Oughterard, the vicar of Molehill, has been tormented by anxiety since he accidentally strangled one of his parishioners (A Load of Old Bones, 2008). He’d be languishing in jail if not for the timely aid of his clever cat Maurice and his playful dog Bouncer, who managed to remove evidence from the crime scene that could have led to their master’s arrest. Now, however, he’s being gently blackmailed by Nicholas Ingaza, the old college pal who provided his alibi. Nicholas wants the vicar to house some stolen paintings. A comedy of errors ensues as the frantic vicar moves them from the belfry to his sister’s house to the church crypt. Things go from bad to worse when one of the paintings turns up at a church fundraiser and is purchased by a parishioner. Fortunately for the vicar, the buyer’s love of art is blissfully unaccompanied by any knowledge of art. The ever more nervous vicar tries to get the paintings out of his possession before the police discover that he’s involved in a crime yet again.
Maurice and Bouncer steal the show in a mildly amusing tale that lacks any real mystery.