Chief Inspector Harry Brock, of Scotland Yard’s Homicide and Serious Crime Command, investigates a disappearance that may not be a crime at all.
A month ago, Eunice Bailey took her wedding ring to a jeweler to be resized. But she never returned to pick it up, and now the manager of the shop is concerned. What sort of woman does without her wedding ring? Egged on by their nameless and clueless commander, Brock and his sergeant, Dave Poole (Whispering Grass, 2006, etc.), begin to make inquiries and immediately find a perfectly good answer that they choose to ignore: the sort of woman whose marriage has turned to ash. For all his unquestioned wealth, Martin Bailey, developer and entrepreneur, is close with money, and during the first of many interviews, he acknowledges that his wife has left him. Brock and his colleagues trace Eunice to Bermuda, where she stayed with her lover, American playboy Tom Nelson, met the mysterious Nigel Skinner and charged some swimwear to a credit card after Nelson went back to England without her. But there the trail ends. Not even their own trip to the island turns up enough evidence to tell them where Eunice went, or whether she’s dead or alive. Only dogged police work, including repeated returns to Bailey’s home, will establish that whatever he knows about his wife’s disappearance, the cold-hearted husband, who’s already taken a mistress, is a big fat liar.