Nina Quinn owns a thriving landscaping business. She has several employees who she feels are more like friends than employees. When Kit, her right-hand handyman goes missing, Nina immediately starts looking for him. What she finds gives her more questions than answers. She arrives at Kit’s ex-girlfriends business to find it locked up tight with Kit’s car with bloodstains in it parked out front. Inside is Kit’s dog and the ex-girlfriend, dead and surrounded by illegal drugs. With the police looking for Kit as the murder, Nina needs to not only find Kit but also the real murder.
If the isn’t enough, things are chaotic at home. Thanksgiving is only days away and Nina has invited her boyfriend, Bobby’s family over. She comes home to find her ex-husband has been released from the hospital and has moved in to recover. Her mother, trying to be helpful, has also moved in to take care of the ex-husband. Nina’s stepson decided to live with her when his parents split so he’s there too. Nina still hasn’t shopped for Thanksgiving dinner and suddenly there are live turkeys running around the neighborhood and a rooster!
This is a cute little book. It’s part of a series featuring Nina Quinn but can be read alone. I haven’t read any of the other books and I enjoyed this one. Nina has a habit of helping her friends even if it means interfering with a police investigation. She just has to take care of people. This drives the police nuts but her ex-husband is a cop so they do give her a little leeway.
There is nothing in depth in this book. You have enough information on the characters to get a feel for them but no real details. Still, the characters are likeable and aren’t one-dimensional. The mystery is laid out as Nina finds the clues. She actually talks out her theories with one of her neighbors who likes to ride along to help. She also was Nina’s high school English teacher and still scares her! Few things are hidden so you don’t have to worry about missing an important piece of the mystery. The biggest mystery that isn’t laid out right away is how the turkeys ended up in the neighborhood.
The characters interact well. Nina has been a step mom for her stepson since he was in elementary school. Therefore, she treats him as she would her own son. When she thinks he may be doing something he shouldn’t, she asks around and checks it out as any good parent and the stepson acts and yells like a normal teenager. Having your ex staying with you can cause problems especially when the new love lives close. Nina’s dealing with this was done well. Of course, it helps when your mom is on your side too.
Overall, it’s a quick reading book. It would be perfect to read on the beach or some place where you don’t want to have to concentrate too hard. It’s one of those books that you can put down and pick back up and not loose your place. There’s no big love scenes or any other things that would prevent middle to older teen to read and enjoy this book though the main character is a bit old for their tastes.
Landscaper Nina Quinn would do anything for her employees. After all, Taken by Surprise, her garden makeover business, wouldn't be blooming if it weren't for them. So when Kit Pipe, her right-hand handyman, goes missing, Nina immediately starts digging into his disappearance. But all she finds is Daisy Bedinghaus, Kit's ex—and she's dead as dirt.
An ex-con who'd been dumped by Daisy not long before her murder, Kit's the prime suspect. But Nina's determined to prove his innocence and nip this whole thing in the bud. After all, it'll get her out of her all-too-crowded house, where her ex-husband the cop is recovering from a gunshot wound on her couch and her thorny stepson is giving her the evil eye. But as she comes closer to unearthing the truth, Nina will find that facing the frost in her home is nothing compared to confronting a killer's ice-cold stare.