Sweet, charming cousin Tina is angry. Indignant. Furious. Because Dante Radcliff has not only had the nerve to return to Wonder Springs, but he’s getting married. And inviting all his ex-girlfriends, of which Tina was one a decade ago, when she was in high school and he was in his forties. Now she’s been roped into folding napkins for the reception by Glynis Beverley, who pulls double duty as Wonder Springs’ wedding planner and funeral director, as Dante and his blushing bride, Lee Lanner, pose for dramatic wedding photos.
Dante, it turns out, is a telempath. He has the ability to direct how others feel, which is why his exes despise him at a distance, but melt into gooey sentiment in his presence. It’s a power he uses to his advantage against others, particularly women … which is why, on the morning of the wedding, there are countless suspects when the vineyard wedding venue on Haven Island is found butchered. Every single grape has been sliced off the vine with devastating accuracy. All his exes are in town, but Tina is the only one who’s gone missing, and Grandma Meredith has had a disturbing dream about death.
It’s certainly not a good time for Summer to discover that Cade isn’t an only child … his sister, Fiona, an ex in town for the wedding, launches her first emotional assault on Summer while towel-drying her hair. Compounding the frustrations Cade and Summer have battled trying to connect and control her Disruptor abilities and his Tuner powers, Fiona expertly wages full-out psychic war on her brother’s girlfriend, using Summer as a punching bag for her own tortured spirit.
It’s hard to believe one man could so seriously disrupt bucolic Wonder Springs, where not a chain store lurks and happiness is the natural order. But as Uncle Barnaby rages, Dante is the kind of man who packs his mayhem in a travel bag. “Has the possibility truly not penetrated your narcissistic mind that the avenger who savaged your vineyard may not yet be sated? That you yourself may yet be in danger?”
Unsurprisingly, his question is astonishingly on point, because just a few hours later, Dante turns up dead.
Tension in town ramps up into frenzy as a storm approaches, the river rises and Sheriff Jake worries not only about his son’s physical welfare, but his shifter daughter’s endless paroxysms of fury. And Summer wonders just why vacuous Elaine, in her expensive mismatched outfits and tuned-out mindset, shadows her every step, making even more of a nuisance of herself than usual.
What she, and all the residents of Wonder Springs, are about to realize is that the stakes are higher than ever before, and monumental trouble has just started brewing.