Joanna Stuart, in the wake of some unrevealed trauma, impulsively leaves her home and drives to a far-off, fondly remembered seaside hotel--only to arrive in the midst of a murder investigation. Julia Wentworth, one of a troupe of summer players resident at the Seaview, has been killed in her dressing room--and Detective Neil Carter (Drink This, Trio in Three Flats) is in charge, soon recruiting Joanna as spy and bed-mate. Among the suspects: dancers, singers, three sisters who do a saxophone act (complete with terrifying mother), a veteran ventriloquist. But though Dewhurst works hard to make all these theatrical folk seem irresistible, they remain dull company. And after Joanna is used as bait to trap the murderer, the reason for her vapors is unveiled--and she walks off into the sunset, but not with the Inspector. Slow-paced and talky fare, showing little of the light touch that flickered through Drink This; for murder in a theatrical milieu, re-read Ngaio Marsh instead.