Read this as a mystery novel rather than straight mystery, for though there are two violent deaths and a suicide, and plenty of suspects trailed through an intricate plot, the pace of the story is rather slow, and the focus is on the psychological implications rather than the crimes. Strangely distorted relations are built around Lucy, cruel and lovely wife of Bracken, whom she has taunted into becoming a drunkard, and who is killed. Lucy's mother-in-law is also killed -- and evidence is planted so as to implicate Lucy's daughter, 17-year old Vanna, and the local boy she loves. Then there is Holly, gigolo to the eccentric old Mrs. Bracken, lover of Lucy- but actually dependent on the whims of the lot of them. And chiefly it is Vanna's story, a story of hate for an unnatural mother, and youthful love, as she confuses all issues by lying to shield her pitiful romance. The setting is Westchester County, New York. Better novel than mystery.