If ever there was a town bully in River Bend, Illinois, Milton
Grone is it. He’s as stingy with his second wife as
he was with his first, to whom he owes back child support,
and he refuses to remove the fence he built six inches into
Felicity Timmons’ yard. Milton inherited land along
the Mississippi River from his father, and the entire town
is upset at his plan to sell to a developer for millions,
even though his father promised to donate that land to the
city. Unfortunately, no one can locate any document to prove
Widow Helen Evans has lived in the cozy town for fifty of
her seventy-five years, long after her four children moved
away. Like many other town members, Helen doesn’t want
the development of a water park that would destroy the beauty
of the nearby riverbank area.
Then Milton is found dead in his front yard and it at appears
he had a heart attack and stuck his head against a rock. Helen
suspects there’s more to his death than meets the eye,
especially when Sheriff Frank Biddle learns Milton was killed
by Felicity’s missing shovel. As Helen works with the
Sheriff to investigate the death, the list of possible suspects
grows. Did the naturalists commit the murder? Or was it Milton’s
ex-wife? Or does the murder have more sinister implications?
Susan McBride has a wonderful ability to blend solid, poignant
plots with settings and characters that seem real. Helen is
indeed a modern Miss Marple, making this a delightful read.
The other characters were so well developed that I felt I
knew them, and the surprising twists and turns kept me reading
well into the night. I love this series and eagerly await
the next release.
Future releases in the series are Mad as Helen
(7/29/14) and Not a Chance in Helen (9/30/14)