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Authors: Molly Macrae

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Dyeing Wishes

BOOK: Dyeing Wishes
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Praise for
the Haunted Yarn Shop Mysteries

Last Wool and Testament

“A great start to a new series! By weaving together quirky characters, an interesting small-town setting, and a ghost with a mind of her own, Molly MacRae has created a clever yarn you don’t want to end.”

—Betty Hechtman, national bestselling authorof
Yarn to Go

“A delightful paranormal regional whodunit that…accelerates into an enjoyable investigation. Kath is a fascinating lead character.”

—Genre Go Round Reviews

“A delightful and warm mystery…with a strong, twisting finish.”


“Suspense and much page flipping!…I loved the characters, the mystery; everything about it was pitch-perfect!”

—Cozy Mystery Book Reviews

“The paranormal elements are light, and the haunted yarn shop premise is fresh and amusing.”

RT Book Reviews

Praise for Other
Mysteries by Molly MacRae

“MacRae writes with familiarity, wit, and charm.”

Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine

“Witty…keeps the reader guessing.”

Publishers Weekly

“Murder with a dose of drollery…entertaining and suspenseful.”

The Boston Globe


Also by Molly MacRae

Last Wool and Testament



Molly MacRae


Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA
USA | Canada | UK | Ireland | Australia | New Zealand | India | South Africa | China Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England For more information about the Penguin Group visit
First published by Obsidian, an imprint of New American Library, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
First Printing, July 2013
Copyright © Molly MacRae, 2013
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights. Purchase only authorized editions.
OBSIDIAN and logo are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-101-61459-4
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party Web sites or their content.
The recipes contained in this book are to be followed exactly as written. The publisher is not responsible for your specific health or allergy needs that may require medical supervision. The publisher is not responsible for any adverse reactions to the recipes contained in this book.


For the Little Wool Shop,
opened in 1935 in the Market Square in Lake Forest,
Illinois, by my grandmother
Katharine Vincent Canby









It takes an agent, an editor, friends, and a family to raise a writer. To raise a mystery writer it also takes putting up with questions about blunt instruments, red herrings, poisons, and plot twists. For every ounce of support they give me, I’m grateful to my agent, Cynthia Manson, my editor at Penguin, Sandy Harding, my colleagues at the Champaign Public Library, my writing friends, and members of the Champaign Urbana Spinners and Weavers Guild. Special thanks to Kate Winkler, whose knitting needles produce not only catnip mice but magic. And above all, thank you to the guys at home who do the laundry and the shopping and who cook, wash dishes, and cheer me on with love and dark chocolate.




Table of Contents

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28
Chapter 29
Chapter 30
Chapter 31
Chapter 32
Chapter 33
Catnip Mouse
Chocolate Cake with Ganache
Joe Dunbar’s Versatile Squashed Squash
Spinning in Her Grave
Chapter 1

here are the lambs?” Ernestine asked when she and I caught up to the rest of our group at the pasture fence. “Did Kath and I dawdle too long? Have they already run off to play?”

“Oh, sorry, Ernestine,” I said. She was spry for being nearly round and almost eighty, but I’d been sure I was doing her a favor by walking slowly down the farm lane with her. As it turned out, she’d been the one waiting for me because I couldn’t help stopping to take pictures of our beautiful Upper East Tennessee springtime along the way. She kindly hadn’t complained, but now I felt bad because we’d expected to see Debbie’s new lambs frisking in the field. “Did we miss them, Debbie?”

“No. They’re with their mamas,” Debbie said, “at the far end, over there under that beech tree.” She pointed across the hillocky field.

Not knowing much about lambs or their mamas, I wasn’t surprised they weren’t hanging around at the fence waiting for us. Debbie seemed puzzled, though, and it was her farm and they were her sheep, so I mimicked her scrunched nose and stared across the field where she pointed. I could just make them out standing in a white huddle under a huge tree.

Ernestine put her cheek to Debbie’s extended arm, using it and Debbie’s index finger as a sight. Her head barely
reached Debbie’s shoulder, and as she squinted toward the sheep, her thick glasses flashed in the sun. Concentrating and leaning into her squint the way she did, and dressed in a gray sweater and slacks, she looked like a grandmother mole trying to bring the world into better focus. She wasn’t as blind as a mole but she probably didn’t see the tree, much less the sheep, at that distance.

Thea and Bonny, the other two women with us, had already gotten tired of straining to see the sheep. Thea, in jeans and a Windbreaker, climbed up and sat on the fence. Bonny was checking her phone for messages.

“I don’t get it,” Debbie said. “Usually they’ll come see if I’ve brought treats. And the lambs are always curious. But I don’t think they’ve even noticed us.”

The five of us, members of the needle arts group Thank Goodness It’s Fiber (TGIF), had met up that morning at Debbie Keith’s farm, Cloud Hollow. Thea and Ernestine had been smart and had carpooled with Bonny, letting her navigate the half dozen winding miles up the Little Buck River valley from our small town of Blue Plum. I’d driven out alone, arriving last and feeling as though I’d made it despite, rather than because of, Debbie’s directions, which included the near-fatal phrase “and you can’t miss it.”

We’d all looked forward to spending the morning in Debbie’s studio. She was going to teach us her techniques for dyeing yarn and wool roving by “painting” them. Unfortunately, in her flurry of preparations, Debbie had locked the key to the studio inside it. She’d phoned her neighbor across the river, who kept an extra set of keys for her. The neighbor said she’d drop the keys off on her way to town and we’d decided to make the most of our wait by walking down the farm lane to visit the new lambs. But, as we saw, the lambs and their mamas were otherwise occupied.

BOOK: Dyeing Wishes
2.81Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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