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Florist Grump

Cover of Florist Grump

Florist Grump

Flower Shop Mystery Series, Book 17
From the New York Times bestselling author of A Root Awakening, feisty florist Abby Knight is back with another knotty murder to solve in the next Flower Shop Mystery...
Life in Bloom
Stopping to smell the roses should be a must for flower shop owner Abby Knight, but stress has turned her into a major grump. While their house is under construction, Abby and her new husband, Marco, are living with her parents, who are driving her nuts. Not to mention that everyone has babies on the brain, with her cousin Jillian's bundle of joy popping up in every conversation, and Marco's mother dropping hints that she expects a new sprout from Abby and her son—as soon as possible!
But things get even thornier after a flashy former banker pushes up daisies. With a beloved window washer the prime suspect in the murder, other New Chapel shop owners rally around Abby and Marco to prove his innocence. With Abby's energy wilting, she has to be on high alert—or she and Marco may not live to see their new home...
From the New York Times bestselling author of A Root Awakening, feisty florist Abby Knight is back with another knotty murder to solve in the next Flower Shop Mystery...
Life in Bloom
Stopping to smell the roses should be a must for flower shop owner Abby Knight, but stress has turned her into a major grump. While their house is under construction, Abby and her new husband, Marco, are living with her parents, who are driving her nuts. Not to mention that everyone has babies on the brain, with her cousin Jillian's bundle of joy popping up in every conversation, and Marco's mother dropping hints that she expects a new sprout from Abby and her son—as soon as possible!
But things get even thornier after a flashy former banker pushes up daisies. With a beloved window washer the prime suspect in the murder, other New Chapel shop owners rally around Abby and Marco to prove his innocence. With Abby's energy wilting, she has to be on high alert—or she and Marco may not live to see their new home...
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    ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

    CHAPTER ONE

    Monday

    I used to like Monday mornings. They were the opening ceremonies of the Olympic Games, revving up my enthusiasm for the challenges of the week ahead, or the starting pistol at the horse races, sending me out of the gate with a burst of energy, ready to run the course no matter how much mud was on the track.

    Sadly, those days were over, a fading vision in my rearview mirror, a reminder that life is ever changing—and not always for the better. And it wasn't only the beginning of the week that fate had fumbled. It was every morning of every day. Every. Day.

    This morning was a prime example. I'd risen at seven o'clock, showered, put on mascara, a little blush, skipped the concealer—nothing covered my freckles—and tamed the red beast that many called my hair. Marco had already walked our rescue dog, Seedy, and brought me a cup of coffee laced with half-and-half, just the way I liked it. After seven months of marriage, this small token of love still amazed me.

    Then we'd proceeded to the kitchen for breakfast.

    The Olympic torch had barely been lit when its bright flame began to flicker.

    * * *

    The previous September I had become Abigail Knight Salvare, wife of Marco Salvare, the former Army Ranger/current owner of Down the Hatch Bar and Grill and the sexiest man in town. He had dark hair, soulful brown eyes, a strong jaw, an olive complexion with a faint five-o'clock shadow, muscular arms, and trim hips—honestly, he could have been a cover model for GQ. What he saw in a busty, five-foot-two, Irish-tempered redhead was a mystery to me.

    In addition to being Marco's wife, I was the owner of Bloomers Flower Shop, located on the square in New Chapel, Indiana. I had also recently become Marco's partner in the Salvare Detective Agency, and together we had helped solve sixteen murder cases. There was a lot on my plate, but I loved it all.

    Then, after several long months of being crammed into Marco's bachelor pad, and with his lease up for renewal, we'd embarked on a laborious and tangled house hunt. By "laborious" I mean that my cousin Jillian went into false labor three times while assisting us with the hunt, and by "tangled" I mean that we got ourselves into quite a knot of a murder investigation.

    Thanks to my budding sleuthing skills, the murder case had been resolved, but not the house hunt. So we'd decided to build. Because of that decision, we needed to save money and find a temporary place to live, so—deep breath, Abby—we'd moved in with my parents.

    To be honest, I wasn't in favor of it, but they'd insisted, and Marco had accepted for both of us, something I believed he had come to regret. In any case, we were now ensconced in my childhood bedroom, still painted screaming yellow with purple accents and decorated with plaster of paris handprints I made in kindergarten, a silhouette of my ten-year-old head, framed awards for perfect attendance (the only awards I'd ever received), and posters of my favorite childhood movies. Basically, I was living in a flashback.

    Now the room that had once been my punishment—as in, "Go to your room, young lady—you are grounded!"—had become my sanctuary. It was the only place in the house where Marco and I had any privacy, and even then, we had our little Seedy packed in with us.

    In my parents' kitchen, which was spacious enough for a long, farm-style table and eight chairs, Marco made oatmeal for himself and I had a second cup of coffee. I never ate at home on Mondays because my assistant, Lottie, always served up her famous skillet...

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Florist Grump
Florist Grump
Flower Shop Mystery Series, Book 17
Kate Collins
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