Competition at an elite Connecticut kennel club has a sharp and deadly bite in this “masterful” mystery (The Plain Dealer).
As if raising her son Davey, training her rambunctious Poodle for the show ring, and grooming fellow handler Sam Driver for romance aren’t enough, Melanie Travis’s entrée into the exclusive Belle Haven Kennel Club has been met with a grisly murder. Unfortunately, the only witnesses to the crime were the victim’s startled pair of Beagles. And they aren’t talking…
Melanie hadn’t intended to do any serious snooping, what with coping with the unexpected arrival of an ex-husband out to get joint custody of the son he’s never known. In need of some serious distraction, she's off to sniff out dangerous secrets…only to discover that everyone at Belle Haven has something damning to hide.
As the shocking truth slowly comes to light—and her own domestic drama moves center stage—Melanie finds herself eager to put the bite on a dogged killer.
“A story as controlled as a well-behaved dog on a lead.”—Publishers Weekly
“Don’t make me sit up and beg. Read this book today.”—Dorothy Cannell
In her third adventure (after Underdog) in the rarefied world of dog fanciers in Southern Connecticut, Melanie Travis copes with the unexpected reappearance of her ex-husband, Bob. After almost five years of deadbeat dadhood, Bob has decided to become a responsible parent, and if that's not enough, Melanie's unrelenting aunt Peg is nipping at her heels to join the Belle Haven Kennel Club. Still learning how to groom and show her new dog, a standard poodle named Faith, Melanie finds discovers that kennel club members anything but a well-bred lot. Plying her with pictures of their dogs, they quiz her on her own and align themselves into various camps. When the president announces that some cash and checks are missing, the meeting quickly degenerates into accusation and innuendo. A week later club member Monica Freedman is found murdered in a parking lot. Beginning to dig, Melanie soon unearths a few skeletons, which turn out to be the same ones Monica had uncovered and used to taunt her colleagues, including Aunt Peg. It seems the cream of Connecticut society has dabbled in fraud, animal abuse, alcoholism and deception in the ring. All of this is a romp among puppies compared to Melanie's problems with Bob, who wants to take their son, Davey, back to Texas, to live with him and his 20-year-old fiancee. Melanie's easygoing common sense helps her solve both problems in a story as calm and as controlled as a well-behaved dog on a lead.