Christmas Card Murder by Leslie Meier

Lucy Stone is a journalist for the small-town newspaper where she lives.  She has a great husband, three grown children, a job she enjoys, good friends, and a fabulous old home.  With two of the three kids out of the house and the third almost finished with college, Lucy is thrilled when her contractor husband agrees to enlarge the Master Bedroom and add a Master Bath.  It will be the perfect Christmas gift for the two of them.  When the walls start coming down Lucy cannot help being excited but when they find a Christmas card hidden in the walls with a cryptic message of ill-will inside, Lucy is determined to find out who the card was sent to and why.

Unfortunately, life can get in the way of personal endeavors so Lucy has to search for answers while keeping her boss at the paper happy.  When a man in prison for killing a girl several years earlier in the town where Lucy lives comes up for parole, her boss wants to maximize the coverage and get more people interested in the paper.  Lucy is forced to interview the defense attorney who claims the man was innocent all along, but the town wants this man dead.  Lucy is now working on two complex cases trying to determine the psychology behind each case.  What kind of person sends a Christmas card like that and what kind of man kills a young woman on a hiking trail? During a snowstorm in which Lucy is stuck at the Newspaper headquarters, Lucy discovers some answers to her questions.  

This is a fast read and a fun mystery that will challenge your thinking on what it means to be a bad person, the judgment of people, and how many lives can get ruined by the deeds of others.  

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