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Eye for An Eye (Molly Sutton Mysteries 10): Ebook

Eye for An Eye (Molly Sutton Mysteries 10): Ebook

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Immerse yourself in French village life

cozy mystery

Read a description of the series

Boston girl Molly Sutton moves to a village in France to heal after a divorce--but then a girl goes missing. Follow the intrepid expat as she uncovers secrets and chases down murderers in charming Castillac, eating a few pastries along the way.

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March 2008

It was early spring, but in Provence the air already smelled rich and full of the promise of fresh growth and flowers. Redheaded Molly Sutton, standing at the railing of a luxurious rooftop terrace in the historical center of Aix-en-Provence, turned her face up to the evening sky and inhaled deeply, unable to stop smiling. Dearly as she loved her own village, who could turn down an invitation to someplace new … especially in Provence.

It had been a glorious few months since marrying Ben Dufort on a snowy afternoon in Castillac. The couple had enjoyed every second of their honeymoon in Nice, even finding, as perhaps only happy newlyweds can, that a case of stomach upset was hilarious instead of annoying, that a winter sunburn is an opportunity for the delectable mutual slathering of unguents rather than an annoyance, and best of all, that tying the knot had not dulled their feelings for each other one bit.

They had returned home renewed and contented and begun their married life without any difficulties on the horizon, save not quite having enough work for Dufort/Sutton Investigations, which was not an unusual state of affairs. After the wedding, the gossips of the village (which, to be honest, included nearly everyone) were quiet on the subject of Molly and Ben; after all, happiness and contentment do not offer much in the way of juicy news. They tried to stir up some interest in the fact that Molly, only a scant few months after the wedding, had traipsed off by herself to visit out-of-town friends: really, so soon? Was there trouble in paradise? But Ben had responded to any such hints with a hearty laugh, and the talk had eventually dwindled away.

The sun had long since dropped below the rooftops, but Molly could see perfectly well thanks to the streetlights. Just below, rue Niccolo was narrow, and peering down without leaning out too far, she could see into the building on the other side of the street: an older man stood at a stove, stirring something in a saucepan. Farther inside the room, a beautifully-set table lit by candles.

The terrace was the top of a stunning house belonging to her friends Adèle and Michel Faure, brother and sister, whom she had met on a case early in her career as an investigator. The stylishness of the apartment was testament to their very good (and expensive) taste, but to Molly’s mind, the real achievement was the roof garden, which when they had bought the place had consisted of nothing but a desultory café table and a couple of uncomfortable chairs parked on a flat tarpaper roof. But now it was a green paradise right in the middle of town, with trees in enormous jardinières just beginning to leaf out, as well as an extensive herb garden already bursting with a wide variety of herbs ready to snip for an omelette, a stew, or a cocktail.

Well, luxurious roof gardens aside, if I’m going to be honest, I do miss Ben rather badly, thought Molly, letting her eyes drift over the herbs distractedly, and allowing herself to get a little misty-eyed. He told me I would and he was right. She smiled again, remembering how he had teased her when she told him about her plan to visit Provence.

“It’s not that I’m restless by nature,” she had said. “Well, maybe just a little. But I don’t have all that much in the way of gîte bookings at the moment. I mean, yes, someone is coming every week, but it’s not like we’re full up the way it will be in summer. So … it seems like the right moment to skip town, just for two or three weeks. Apart from Lawrence, Adèle and Michel were the first real friends I made in France, and I haven’t seen them in so long. I don’t want the connection to lapse so long it fades away, you know? Adèle is all hot for me to come to the music festival and listen to some opera. But please, be honest—do you mind staying home and running the gîtes while I’m away? Would you rather come to Aix with me? Because we can find someone to run things while we’re gone, I’m sure.”

Ben had reassured her that the honeymoon was enough travel to last him for a while, and he was more than happy to stay behind and take care of the gîtes. He kissed her long and lovingly, and she knew in that moment that she would suffer being apart from him. But Molly was not a person who expected life to be free of suffering every second, and she was independent through and through. So she packed her bags and took a train to Aix, which she fell in love with so immediately and so violently that while she was there, she believed it to be even more magnificent than Paris (though she was unwilling to admit this to anyone because it seemed blasphemous).

Molly held onto the iron railing with both hands and closed her eyes. Someone called a cat (who says the French aren’t optimists? thought Molly), and the smell of something cooking in wine drifted up to the roof along with the sound of clattering pots and pans. It was Friday night. The neighborhood was sitting down to dinner, and Molly’s mouth began to water as she wondered what her friends were making in the kitchen.

The day of traveling was done, the reunion with her friends had been joyful and instantly comfortable, her glass of wine was more than delicious, the roof garden an oasis of calm. All she had to do was wait a few more moments for her friends to return from their day of errands and cooking. Everything—even including missing Ben—should have been delightful.

But somehow, Molly could not settle. She sat down on an insanely comfortable glider with soft cushions but got right up again, back to the edge of the roof, and looked down at rue Niccolo. It was empty. She saw that the shoots on the pollarded trees were starting to sprout, which usually fascinated her, but her eyes skated past them.

I don’t know, she thought. Everything is just as it should be, and yet …

Molly breathed deeply and appreciated the smell of chicken cooking in wine. Probably just some leftover stress from traveling, she thought, going back to the glider and taking another big sip from her glass. After all, feelings aren’t facts … right?

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Murder follows wherever she goes....

It's just a relaxed visit to Provence to see old friends. A joyful reunion...until a murder spree breaks out in the neighborhood--and you know Molly's not going to rest until the killer is caught.

But so many bodies, so many suspects, so many red herrings. How in the world will Molly do it?

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