Literary agent and sometime sleuth Charlie Greene made her escape sixteen years ago. Now, dragging her heels, she has come home to Boulder, and murder. All Charlie wants is a little peace and quiet so she can focus on her work. Lately, though, there's always a crisis, whether it's her teenaged daughter, her mother, or a dead body. And these days, it's all three.
Charlie has reluctantly returned to her childhood home of Boulder, Colorado, unhappy daughter in tow, to be with her mother, Edwina, who has just had major surgery. Mom is fine, but Boulder seems to be as crazy as ever, with pets disappearing, fires raging in the mountains, and rowdy college students rampaging around town. Boulder evokes decidedly mixed feelings in Charlie. She left after Libby was conceived sixteen years ago, and hasn't returned until now. There's plenty to keep her thoughts and emotions occupied, though, since her mother seems to be suspected of doing away with one of her neighbors.