The street signs outside Detective Jeremy Ransom's office say it's Chicago, but inside -- and inside his mind and heart and speech -- it's rural England circa 1930. Ransom's second case turns on a riddle with all the earmarks of a British cozy: How did Melina, the tarot reader Angela Stephens consulted on the last clay of her life, know Angela was about to be murdered? It's no good asking Melina: Before she has time for more than a brisk sniff or two, she's followed her late client into the spirit realm. And Ransom and his surrogate grandmother, Emily Charters, whose life he saved in their debut (Presence of Mind, 1994), are left with two deeply unpromising suspects: the transparently grief-stricken widower, Frank Stephens, and Angela's bad-girl sister, Eva Brinkley, who didn't inherit a thing and boasts a shockproof alibi anyway. Emily's not much help this time, and Ransom's improbable charm -- he must be the politest cop in Chicago annals -- grows a little pale. The plot is a perfectly good short-story idea stretched as thin as that last smidgen of marmalade.