Miranda Trent runs a hike-and-paint tour business, Paint & Shine, in the Daniel Boone National Park in the Appalachians. Clients enjoy a great trek, the opportunity to paint or sketch in the park, an authentic Southern home-cooked meal and the chance to sample local moonshine. This time she’s taking rock climbers, the Risky Business Adventurers, along the Battleship Rock Trail. The plan is they’ll hike to a venue where they’ll have the chance to paint a spectacular view. Then they discover a body…
When it turns out the victim is Miranda’s cousin Howard Cable, who disappeared several years earlier, the case becomes very personal. Miranda doesn’t believe it was a hiking accident given Howard was an experienced outdoorsman and turns out he was also a former member of the Risky Business Adventurers! Miranda enlists the help of Ranger Austin Morgan to find out the truth…and if the Risky Business Adventurers were involved.
Author Cheryl Hollon has created a strong entrepreneurial heroine in Miranda, who is building her business, juggling her personal life and investigating her cousin’s death. Ms. Hollon has such a good hand with description you feel like you’re right in the forest with the characters in the novel. This is an interesting series with art, mystery and building a business entwined with a mystery to be solved. I look forward to the next Paint and Shine Mystery.