This is book one in a new cozy mystery series, with the setting of a recently widowed woman coming to a small town to start a craft store. One HER opening day (what the heck is it with opening days and these books?) the clown she hires to stand in front of the store is murdered in her back room… with one of her knitting needles. She is seen as the number one suspect, especially when a tie is found to a person she knew in her old home in NYC who she had a business arrangement with which ended badly. Since she knows she is innocent, and WE know she is innocent, she begins her own efforts to find out what really happened and clear her name.
We meet the loyal friend, the oddball friends who craft with her, and the big bad cop, who is big and bad because in this series, she is not currently falling in love with him. All in all, it was not a bad read, but there was a lot of side story about her best friend’s younger son and his father no longer getting along, too many extra characters, and in all seriousness, the crafting angle seemed a bit forced—she had been a successful jewelry artist in NYC; the death of her husband might have meant she needed to move away to get away from the memories, but to totally give up a successful career for a store that she keeps whining about failing at any second seemed stupid. And adding in, as if hoping the series was a long one, and thus needing several million sub-characters for our heroine to work with, a mother who she does not get along with and who she has a lot of unresolved emotional outburst to come was again, annoyingly distracting. I’m on the fence whether to get the next book in this series, free or otherwise