A quaint picture postcard of pre-WW I small town life in the Derbyshire countryside focusing on the inexplicable death of Miriam Bennett, a bewitching barmaid in Buxton's favorite public house, The Little Rose. Jonathan Bonsall, a simple, quick-tempered gamekeeper, is charged with the axe murder of his daughter-in-law When he's caught red-handed at the scene of the crime. Bonsall's motive is clear enough for his son Jonty recently died of pneumonia in prison after refusing to comply with Miriam's divorce petition. Then there's the narrator, Mr. Bailey, a middle-aged solicitor and self-confessed moralist with more than a passing interest in the affair. Once again tidy, atmospheric, and gratifying.