Ellie Quicke becomes involved in a hunt for answers when her cousin Roy’s wife witnesses a killing by a dog in a local park.
Felicity, a new mother turned hysterical by the violent death she sees, is only one of several problems for Ellie. The rest of her extended family are causing headaches too. Aunt Drusilla, who lives in Ellie’s big Victorian house with Ellie’s friend Rose McNally as housekeeper, is dying. Ellie’s acquisitive daughter Diana, expecting to inherit the lion’s share of her fortune, barges into Drusilla’s home, lawyer in tow, planning to force her into signing a new will. Ellie is shocked and hurt to hear that her pastor and boyfriend Thomas, who’s been a mainstay in her life, is leaving the parish. As she searches for the killer dog, his violent young handler uses it again as a weapon in a mugging. When there’s a fire at her home while she’s staying with Aunt Drusilla, one of the investigating officers is sure Ellie set it for the insurance money. Ellie must garner her strength to prove her innocence, placate and comfort her family and find the dog before it strikes again.
Even though Heley once more reveals the perpetrator early on, Ellie (Murder of Identity, 2007, etc.) is such a complex and likable heroine that we follow her exploits with bated breath.