Nasty doings among the English gentry as seen through the cynical eyes of free-lance researcher Alex Tanner, whose tough, hard-scrabble life limits her empathy with the upper class. Here, she's been asked to investigate the unsolved murder, some 30 years ago, of Rollo Lord Sherwin, shot to death at Ashtons Hall, the family manse. His pretty, indolent wife Laura, a prime suspect at the time, was never charged. She and Rollo, a notorious womanizer, had four daughters. They were all in residence on the fateful night, along with Laura's teenaged niece Rosalind and her governess, Miss Potter, newly arrived from Kenya. It's Miss Potter, now in her 70s, who's to be Alex's main source of background material for the TV documentary that may be produced in the wake of Laura's recent death. Miss Potter, reserved and fiercely honest, is willing to exchange previously hidden facts about the killing in exchange for Alex's help in finding Toad Mayfield, a granddaughter of Rollo's who's been missing for weeks. The bargain is made--with deadly consequences. Both gritty and poignant, with heroine to match. A steadily absorbing first mystery from the author of Smile, Honey and Poor Dear Charlotte.