Lawyer-sleuth Robert Forsythe's capable, middle-aged secretary Miss Sanderson (Death for a Darling, etc.) takes center stage in this new adventure. Young doctor Paul Foster, his beautiful wife and two of their children have been stabbed to death in their cottage in the tiny, dreary village of Maddersly-on-Mead. Foppish Chief Inspector Adam Kepesake and his untidy, clever Sergeant Brummell persuade Sanderson to impersonate a long-estranged Foster cousin, to help care for surviving infant Lucy until family guardians take over, and, above all, to gather information from the closemouthed villagers. Village gossip soon reveals a family less than idyllic but no motives strong enough for wholesale murder. Tension builds as our heroine's detailed reports get worked over by the police and her boss, and matters come to a slightly contrived but gripping climax when Sanderson and the killer face each other over the sleeping baby Lucy. Straightforward, taut and convincing--best of the Giroux stories so far.