Thea Slocombe is struggling to entertain her stepchildren through the long summer holiday while her husband Drew works, so she keenly accepts a new job house-sitting in Barnsley, near Bibury. However, her commission proves to be far from relaxing when she stumbles across a woman hiding among some bushes.
The woman's story is thin and incoherent, but Thea agrees to offer her sanctuary for the night. When her guest is found dead the next morning Thea turns to the police for help, but their preoccupation with a major animal trafficking investigation means she is effectively on her own.
As she digs deeper into the deceased's background, she discovers a tangled web of lies, secrets and at least three very likely suspects .