Ex-crime reporter Jim Qwilleran is back at it in book one of The New Cat Who mystery series as he navigates his way through the 21st century with his beloved Siamese cats Koko, and Yum Yum. Together the trio is busy solving mysteries in Moose County once more. What started out as a Sunday morning walk has turned out to be the start of something dangerous as the past comes back to haunt our hero in a most unusual way. Koko kicks up a fuss that could wake the dead, so Qwill decides to take his little charge out for a very early morning walk to burn off some of his overly abundant feline energy. As the ever-creative cat executes his strategy for the daring defeat of his brand new "escape-proof" harness and takes off for parts unknown, the Scotsman dashes after him and is drawn into deep, dense woods where he stumbles upon the body of a stranger. He cannot possibly anticipate the impact this chance discovery will eventually have on him, or that his little companion will ultimately save his very life once again.
As the investigation at hand continues, one name from the past keeps popping up. Penelope Goodwinter has been dead for many years, but somehow, clues keep bringing her name front and center. How does a dead woman figure into the mix? Qwill digs into a myriad of clues but keeps coming up empty till Koko gives him an assist which points him in the right direction. As usual, the 10-pound cat provides the critical guidance needed to figure out who's who and what's what. The purchase of a new house and the opening of the new museum figure into the goings on, as well as childhood friend Arch Riker, Qwill's new housekeeper Connie McCloud, and a goat named Linda. Pack your bags and come along for some good, clean fun-400 miles north of everywhere!