Robin MacFarland is a smart, funny, self-deprecating journalist who works for the Home and Garden section of a major Toronto newspaper while she grapples hilariously with her weight, drinking and spirituality. The city news is slow and Robin has been assigned to dig up a real estate development story in cottage country near Huntsville, Ontario. Her editor has given her a long list of potential angles including water pollution, light pollution, traffic congestion, boat traffic, taxes, electricity costs, golf courses, fertilizer, algae blooms, land grants and native rights. Robin and her feisty best friend Cindy, a crime reporter, head north and immediately stumble upon a body mangled by a bear in the forest next to Robin's cottage. Robin is suspicious that the victim's death has been disguised to look like an accident, but no one, including her new boyfriend, cop Ralph Creston, believes the person was deliberately murdered.
The plot is anchored by the destruction of wilderness by land developers, but pivots around Robin's humourous jaunt through middle age , a crucial social issue, and a bizarre murder weapon.