Yet another return to the dastardly/defamed Richard III and the Princes in the Tower--in a work of peppery scholarship that, like Charles Ross' recent, far drier Richard Ill (1982), makes much of the historical context, reviews the writings of contemporary and litter-day historians, and effectively discredits the apologists. St. Aubyn (Edward VII) is, if anything, more certain of Richard's de facto guilt; but general readers of any persuasion will find his taut narrative more compelling than Ross' learned dissection. It does help, however, to know something of what's afoot--despite St. Aubyn's recapitulation of the Yorkist/Lancastrian rivalry presaging Richard's usurpation of the throne from his young nephew Edward IV. In chronicling the events of that fateful year, St. Aubyn shows why Richard, Buckingham, and their allies might have found it ""attractive"" to seize Edward. Refusing to rule out wickedness, he argues that 20th-century history ""has made the tyrants of the late Middle Ages more credible to us than they were to the late Victorians."" ""Richard accused his brother of being a bastard and his mother an adulteress,"" he suggests, ""because there was no other ground for dispossessing his nephew."" And, he concludes, ""the balance of probability""--motive, opportunity--is that Edward and his brother ""met violent ends on Richard's orders."" This does not mean, nonetheless, that he acted throughout with forethought. The case reviewed scrupulously, and with zest.