A Chime to Kill

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Picturesque Somerset Harbor, Maine, is getting a new bakery, and Maggie Watson has the fun task of decorating the interior with vintage fare from her shop, Carriage House Antiques. Things get a lot more interesting just outside the bakery, however, when a mysterious antique clock is unearthed during the renovations. Intrigued, Maggie takes it upon herself to dig up any information she can about the perplexing timepiece.

Maggie can't imagine who would have wanted to hide such a beautiful antique or why they would have buried it on that property, so she seeks out answers from a local expert, Mr. Zelenka. However, Maggie's sense of curiosity about the clock soon turns to unease as she notices someone following her around town. Is it a coincidence, or do they know something about the clock's history? 

Working together with her friends at the historical society and handsome alderman James Bennett, Maggie pieces together clues that prove the clock has a value that extends beyond money. But it seems that someone in the town is determined to prevent Somerset Harbor's favorite amateur detectives from digging too deep. Does the beautiful antique have ties to murder, as a local legend indicates? 

Things take a sinister turn as Mr. Zelenka is targeted by an unknown assailant and left for dead. Clearly, the discovery has someone so wound up that they are willing to take drastic steps to acquire the timepiece. Hot on the trail of the truth, Maggie finds herself in a dangerous game of "clock-and-dagger."

Will she uncover the clock's importance before time is up?

The Characters

Maggie Watson is 44 years old. She has lived in the beautiful town of Bennington, Vermont, most of her life with her husband, Richard, who was a successful professor of archeology at a nearby university. Together, they built a loving home and raised their daughter, Emily. And then, three years ago, Richard suddenly died. Maggie had thought they'd spend the rest of their lives growing old together in their cozy New England cottage. But with Richard's passing, Maggie's life changed in ways she never anticipated. And now with Emily off at college, Maggie still isn't sure quite how she fits into this new, lonely phase of her life.

Then, when she unexpectedly inherits Sedgwick Manor -- her aunt's 19th-century colonial mansion -- and the adjacent Carriage House Antiques shop, she wonders if this is the change she needs to move forward with her life. So, on a chilly day in mid-September, Maggie and her equally curious cat, Snickers, head to the small seaside village of Somerset Harbor, Maine, and begin an adventure that will change their lives.

June has run the Carriage House Antiques shop for over 10 years and was a close friend and confidant of Maggie's late aunt. She's outgoing and witty, and she has a natural talent for decorating with antique furnishings. Maggie loves June's enthusiastic spirit and caring nature, warming up to her immediately. It's no surprise that June soon becomes Maggie's best friend and "partner in crime" as they dig into the mysteries of Sedgwick Manor.

Maggie's daughter is warm and friendly with a big, bright smile. She's always been close to her mother -- even more so since her father died three years ago. But now she has left Maggie in order to study nursing at St. Joseph's College in Maine. Maggie understands that Emily needs space to spread her wings and become the independent, responsible young woman she raised her to be, but she still misses her daughter.

An avid quilter, Ruth is the president of the Somerset Harbor Historical Society. She extends a warm welcome to Maggie and invites her into this small group of friendly women. Maggie takes an immediate liking to her. Ruth offers to help Maggie solve the mysteries of the antique pieces found in Sedgwick Manor. She has lived in Somerset Harbor her entire life and always seems to know the buzz around town. Ruth knew Maggie's aunt Evelyn very well, and Maggie can't help but wonder if Ruth might also know Evelyn's secrets.