A new widow begins to doubt that her husband’s death was a hit-and-run accident.
Lewis Streat takes the dog for a walk and doesn’t come home. When his wife Emma goes looking, she discovers his lifeless body on a seldom used road near their 200-year-old Connecticut house. Only days before, a Chinese trade representative had been murdered at JFK. His last visit before heading to the airport was to Lewis’s corner office at Galbraith Technologies, which designs laser weapons systems. Are the deaths related? Could they have something to do with Lewis’s recent testiness and the project an English physicist was working on? Heading for London, Emma tries to interest Lord Andrew Rodale, a sexy, autocratic nabob with ties to the Secret Service. The physicist dies, Emma is attacked several times, her home is burned down and the company her husband headed is slated to be taken over by his rival Danny Peplow. Emma’s intuition warns her against Lewis’s old friend Hank and the retired owner of the Galbraith firm, but an off-the-cuff remark lands her in the attic of a stately home with a killer ready to incinerate her.
West’s mystery debut is marred by tepid romantic overtones and the tendency of almost everyone to babble facts Emma has no business knowing. But she has a nice way with the material accouterments of the privileged on both sides of the Atlantic.