Maron’s character driven fifteenth in the Deborah Knott mystery series finds Deborah adjusting to her changed circumstances as a new wife and stepmother. She had been looking forward to taking part in a conference for North Carolina judges being held at beautiful Wrightsville Beach so discovering the strangled corpse of a fellow attendee came as an unwelcome surprise. At the request of local authorities, Deborah began making discreet inquiries among her colleagues in hopes of unmasking the perpetrator. Along the way she discovers an ex may be responsible and if Deborah sn’t very careful, the next victim could be her.
Outstanding setting, character development and personal identity issues fail to elevate this tale that gets off to a slow start and concludes with few surprises. Deborah appears to be more rattled by her new relationship and events then usual and while interesting, don’t add that much to the story. Fans of the series may be disappointed with this one.