Bo Tully, sheriff of Blight County, is on his way to a ski resort when an avalanche strands him, his unusual sidekicks, all the staff and guests at the resort — and possibly the murderer as well.

Bo has to handle the murder (and a very clever murder it is) as well as an amorous– and now married — old flame, a co-ed who keeps blurting out that she has “been intimate” with him, lots of shady characters, the wilder tendencies of his helpers, and a bunch of wildlife to boot.

Avalanche is a mystery, but it is a satisfying novel as well. It’s tempting to compare it with the best chick lit — just sub Scotch and guns for shoes and chocolates — but the writing style lifts this book out of any typical genre category. Memorable characters, snappy dialogue, and thought-provoking musings on life combine with a complex puzzle and plenty of local color to create a perfect book for your next snow day.

Fortunately, this is one of a series.