This is New Hampshire resident Linda S. Reilly's first novel.
"In the small town of Hazleton, New Hampshire, a killer walks free . . .
Paralegal/title searcher Apple Mariani is accustomed to solving mysteries—mysteries such as missing heirs, lingering liens, and gaps in a chain of title. But when appraiser Lou Marshall is stabbed with an antique dagger at an estate sale, Apple finds herself plunged into the heart of a murder. For starters, she learns that the victim had entrusted her with a decades-old valentine only minutes before he was killed. Then things take a nasty turn when Apple’s Aunt Tressa—the victim’s new squeeze—is pegged as a prime suspect, and their elderly friend Lillian goes suddenly missing. Was Lillian kidnapped, or worse, because she witnessed the murder? And why had Lou been so anxious to get that faded old valentine, with its sugary poem, into Apple’s custody? Despite the local police chief’s annoying lack of concern, Apple is sure Lillian is in trouble when a cryptic call from Lillian’s cell phone awakens her late at night. Still haunted by childhood memories of her own mother vanishing, Apple knows she has to find her friend before it’s too late. From the shelves of a local antique shop to the culinary horrors of the grungiest diner in New Hampshire, Apple and Tressa collect a series of clues that lead them in maddening circles... all the way to a frustrating dead end. But time is running out, because a desperate killer, whose patience is wearing thin, still has a deadly agenda.."--Publisher's blurb