Left physically and emotionally wounded at the end of her last adventure (Death Train to Boston
, 1999), San Francisco investigator Fremont Jones limps toward her native Boston to face the thorniest mysteries of identity and inheritance linking parents, children, and spouses. Fremont needs care herself—solicitously provided by her lover and business partner Michael Kossoff—even as she resolves to protect the father she had fled in 1905 for independence in the West. Desperately ill during a winter of sleet and snow, Leonard Pembroke Jones is abandoned to the care of his femme fatale wife, Augusta, who has stopped the clocks, closed the carriage house, dismissed long-time servants, and forbidden all visitors but her own son from Fremont's childhood home. Assuming the detested role of dutiful daughter, Fremont seeks to unmask the wicked stepmother who has bewitched her father and whose ministrations, she is convinced, lie at the root of an illness that soon proves fatal. Then Augusta dies, leaving the icy game afoot outside the house especially treacherous for a sleuth with a cane. While the male police and her partner Michael take the place of her legs, Fremont settles for a more conventionally female role from the traditional amateur mystery. But her snooping at home, unraveling domestic intimacies and betrayals, leaves her alone in the house when suddenly dangerous truths are revealed and moral choices forced on her.
Read full book review >