Virgil Flowers has always been known for having a somewhat active social life, but it looks like his fun is about to be put on hold. While competing in a fishing tournament in a remote area of northern Minnesota, he gets a call from Lucas Davenport to investigate a murder at a nearby resort where a woman has been shot while kayaking. The resort is for women only, a place to relax, get fit, recover from plastic surgery, and commune with nature. This job is going to be very hard on Virgil.
As Virgil begins investigating, he finds a web of connections between the people at the resort, the victim, and some local women, notably a talented country singer. The more he digs, the more he discovers that the arrows of suspicion point in many directions. There's a laundry list of motives: jealousy, blackmail, greed, anger, and fear. But when Virgil learns that this is actually the second murder at the resort, his investigation begins to take shape, and he's reasonably sure there will be a third. As for the fourth murder -- well, Virgil better hope he can catch the killer before that happens, because he's apt to be the victim.