After divorcing her demeaning husband and enduring betrayal by her business partner, Winifred Page packs up her Kansas City life and moves to Estes Park, Colorado, with her loyal corgi, Watson. Her mother and stepfather are the town’s biggest landlords and have reserved a recently-vacated building for her to open a bookstore and start life afresh.
The former renter was a taxidermist, so Fred, as she’s called, is surprised to find a full kitchen upstairs, along with trayfuls of edibles — cannabis-laced sweets — beside the dead body of the candy store owner next door.
As the daughter of a police detective who died in the line of duty, Fred knows a lot about investigations and isn’t about to let matters rest when her stepfather, Barry, is arrested for the murder. The town’s lone female officer, Susan Green, makes her distaste for Fred evident, while Sergeant Branson Wexler’s cordiality is more than professional. As she visits her fellow shopowners and inquires about the late candy maker, she gains a combination of friends and enemies, while seeming to get no closer to the truth … although she’s more on track than she realizes.
Cruel Candy is the first mystery in the Cozy Corgi series, whose number is now in the teens, and promises adventure, friendship, baked goods, and an abundance of dead bodies.