Stray bubbles of mystery amid much Regency froth: gossipy, adder-tongued Marmaduke Yarnton has been murdered at Lady Windlesham's soirÃ‰e, the opening event in the London society Season of 1816. The motive? Well, it appears that Yarnton had discovered the identity of a blackmailer active in this blueblooded milieu--and was struck down soon after his first waspish hint. And so scholarly adventurer Justin Rutherford, intrigued by the murder and concerned about his blackmail-victim friends, sets out to find the villain--with dogged sleuthing (aided by a lively niece and an intrepid Bow Street Runner) leading to the exposure of a not-very-surprising culprit. Minor puzzle, diverting style, lightweight charm: certainly recommended for Regency fans who also love a mystery, not-so-recommended for mystery fans who also like period settings.