China Bayles and her partner Ruby are off to Indigo, TX, to have a booth at the Indigo Spring Arts & Crafts Festival. While there, China and friend Allison Selby will be doing a natural dye workshop called Colors to Dye for at Indigo Valley Farm, where Allison lives.
China is the proprietor of Thyme and Seasons Herbs in Pecan Springs. She used to be a Houston criminal attorney. She is married to Mike McQuaid, former Houston dectective. He now teaches classes at CTSU. His thirteen year old son Brian lives with them and China thinks of him as her son.
Ruby Wilcox is her best friend and business partner. Ruby owns the Crystal Cave, the only New Age shop in Pecan Springs. Together they own Thyme for Tea, a tearoom in the same building as Thyme and Seasons and Crystal Cave.
While in Indigo, China and Allie attend the Historical Indigo Restoration Committee (HIRC) meeting. Casey Ford, Allie's uncle, comes to the meeting and announces that he will be selling off the mining rights to all the land he owns (most of the town) and everyone must vacate by the end of the year. Everyone protests, but he explains that there was a clause on each of their leases that gives him the right to evict if the structure's scheduled to be demolished. When the strip mine comes in, that's exactly what will happen.
The next night after the play Indigo's Blues written by Derek Cooper, Allie's boyfriend, everyone hears a gunshot. When they get out to the street, they find Casey Ford dead. Everyone believes he walked into his own booby-trap at the former Bluebonnet Coffee Shop. Not too long ago Casey had closed down, boarded up and booby-trapped the coffee shop.
McQuaid assists Sheriff Charlie McFarland with the investigation. There are many problems with the investigation. The biggest being that the crime scene is burned to the ground early the next morning. Plus, almost everyone in town had a reason for wanting Casey dead. And they seem to be covering for each other. They might even be setting someone up to take the fall.
China and Ruby assist in the investigation but not officially. Ruby follows her intuition which often gets them into trouble.
The characters in this book are very well written. You can feel the frustration and pain of the small town folks in Indigo. They've been working so hard to revitalize this town and now Casey plans to take that all away. There are quite a few side stories involved as well. It has a well-crafted plot with plenty of twists and turns.
I highly recommend this book.