The author's second turn-of-the-century novel (Murder, I Presume, 1990), set this time in Biarritz, where famed courtesan Topaz Brown has died, leaving her fortune to the Women's Social and Political Union, an embattled organization fighting for the vote for women. Nell Bray, one of its leaders, is assigned to go to Biarritz to protect the union's interests, since Topaz's brother is contesting the will, claiming his sister's suicide was the result of a deranged mind. Meanwhile, Topaz's fanatically loyal maid Tansy Mills is convinced her mistress was murdered by her chief rival, Marie de la Tourelle. Nell also becomes convinced it was murder by a series of unexplained oddities--a five-opal pendant; a cryptic note under Topaz's pillow; a missing key to her private elevator; the strange purchases she made on the eve of her last rendezvous. During her strenuous sleuthing, Nell must also keep an eye on Bobbie Fieldfare, a militant union member out for mischief. In the end, Nell's mission is completed--and justice served- -in a lively story that sometimes sags under its weight of red herrings but gracefully evokes the fervor of the suffragettes and the old-style grandeur of the rich and famous.