As a young boy Ned discovers that he can return the dead briefly back to life with just one touch. But his random gift isn't without deadly consequences... as he soon finds out. Grown up Ned puts his talent to good use by touching dead fruit and making it ripe with everlasting flavor. He opens a pie shop. But his gift leaves him wary of becoming close to anyone, as beautiful waitress Olive Snook finds out. His life as a pie maker gets more complicated when private investigator Emerson Cod finds out about Ned's secret. Emerson convinces the cash-strapped Ned to help him solve murder cases (and collect a hefty reward fee) by raising the dead and getting them to name their killers.
Ned is handed the case that changes his life forever. His childhood sweetheart, Charlotte "Chuck" Charles, is murdered on a cruise ship under strange circumstances. Her death sends him back to his hometown of Coeur d' Coeurs to bring Chuck back to life, albeit briefly, and solve the crime. But once reunited with Chuck, Ned can't send her back. He helps her escape after her grieving aunts, Lily and Vivian, former synchronized swimmers Darling Mermaid Darlings, think they've buried their niece forever.
Chuck becomes the third partner in Ned and Emerson's PI enterprise, but she encourages them to use their skills for good, not just for profit. Ned is overjoyed to be reunited with Chuck, the only girl he's ever loved. Life would be perfect, except for one cruel twist: If Ned ever touches her again, she'll go back to being dead, this time for good.