About the book
Margaret Rudley has finally persuaded her husband Trevor to take a vacation, a week-long canoeing expedition in Northern Ontario. Rudley hates the idea of leaving the Pleasant, the beautiful old country inn they’ve run for over a quarter of a century, but he is reluctant to deny her a cherished dream. They set off, accompanied by long-time guests Elizabeth Miller, Edward Simpson, Norman and Geraldine Phipps-Walker, and a pair of neophytes, Vern Peters and Eric Turnbull. They leave the Pleasant and a few regular guests, including the Sawchucks and their incorrigible eight-year-old grandchildren, Ned and Nora, in the capable hands of Melba Millotte.
But contrary to their hopes, it is chaos at the Pleasant. A serial murderer is on the lam in cottage country. Ned and Nora disappear and a ransom note is received by the local paper. The laundryman’s truck is stolen. Tiffany encounters an intruder in the kitchen in the wee hours of the morning. Detectives Brisbois and Creighton are on the scene to investigate these various crimes, including the appearance of a dead body in a ditch a few miles from the Pleasant and a guest of the inn with some strange habits.
While intrigue swirls around the Pleasant, the canoeists continue downriver, oblivious to the threat that lurks around the next bend. When Gil the guide and Vern Peters disappear, the lives of the group are in peril. Miss Miller and Norman must come through to save the day, but can they?
About the author
Judith Alguire is a Kingston, Ontario writer, whose novels include Pleasantly Dead, The Pumpkin Murders, A Most Unpleasant Wedding, Peril at the Pleasant, and Many Unpleasant Returns, all of which are part of the continuing Rudley Mystery series. Her short stories, articles, and essays have appeared in such publications as The Malahat Review and Harrowsmith, and she is a past member of the editorial board of the Kingston Whig-Standard. A graduate of Queen’s University, she has recently retired from nursing.
“Rudley? You promised not to smoke unless absolutely necessary.”
He tapped the ash into his saucer. “I assure you, Margaret, it is absolutely necessary.”
“Mrs. Sawchuck is doing her best to see that I end up in an insane asylum. Now she’s worried about snakes coming in on the firewood and black widow spiders on the produce.”
“I suppose they could do that.”
“Bite your tongue, Margaret. I’ve assured her Gregoire scans every item with a magic wand.”
“I’m sure she didn’t believe that.”
He smiled a lopsided smile. “Margaret, the woman is so dense, she’d believe we had a cupboard full of elves climbing through the lettuce with ray guns.”
She gave him a reproachful look. “Rudley, the Sawchucks aren’t worried about snakes and spiders. They’re anxious about you going away. They’re getting older. They depend on you. They trust you to keep them safe.”
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