When Maggie Messina, owner of the Black Sheep Knitting Shop, is invited to give knitting workshops at a Berkshires spa resort, she manages to negotiate a cottage that fits all five of the Black Sheep for what promises to be a weekend of knitting bliss. But while the friends are expert at counting stitches, they haven’t counted on murder.
Guests and staff at the Crystal Lake Inn are as varied as a mixed bag of yarn, but most colorful is certainly the owner, charismatic self-help guru and former psychiatrist Dr. Max Flemming. The doctor may have told all in a revealing autobiography, but from his ex-wife to the widow of his former business partner—both employees at the inn—Max seems mired in shad ows from his past. And when a killer strikes during a mountaintop retreat, the Black Sheep wonder what the good doctor might be hiding.
The police seem to be following the wrong thread. But while Maggie’s workshops have given the knitters a unique view of the tensions at the little inn, can they make sense of a crime that is as complexly stranded as a Fair Isle sweater? When the killer murders a second time, the Black Sheep won der if they’ve dropped a stitch and put themselves in mortal danger. . . .
My Comments: I loved this book, but I avoided reading it for a while because I don’t like the cover. Isn’t it odd how that effects us and our reading choices? I tried to analyze why I don’t like the cover and I guess the reason is the cool colors used. I’m more of a warm and bright color person.
Getting back to the story itself – I don’t know much about knitting, but I love the idea of five characters involved in knitting as a hobby and as a way to relax and feel productive. Throwing in a little mystery greatly adds to the appeal. Using a relaxing spa as the setting clinched the deal for me. This is the third book in a series, although it could stand alone. I don’t feel that I got to know the characters deeply or well, but I got an idea of who they were. The age range of the characters varied and I really love that women of all ages can be friends. I find that true in my own life as well. Solving the mystery took some twists and turns, but nothing shocking or unbelievable. A Stitch Before Dying is the type of cozy mystery I enjoy.