There’s more to Rupert Friedman’s death than there seems, with complications that put his nephew Alec and Alec’s blind fiancée Naomi Blake (Killing a Stranger, 2006, etc.) in peril.
Alec Friedman nurses fond memories of family vacations at Fallowfields, his Uncle Rupert’s rambling house on the Fens, and he’s never understood why they stopped abruptly when he was ten. So when Rupert dies of a heart attack, Alec goes (with his father’s blessing, the elder Friedman having insured that whatever quarrel he had with his brother would not be passed down to his son) to Epworth for the funeral, bringing along Naomi and her guide dog Napoleon. Adjusting to the place is a challenge for the ex-DI, who uses her cane to explore the old farmhouse. Luckily, she discovers that the study has a heavy door with a sturdy lock, so she can barricade herself inside when two thugs invade, demanding what they insist Rupert owes them. Their incursion and an assault on Alec convince the pair that Rupert’s business partner, Marcus Prescott, is right: Rupert didn’t really die of natural causes. But finding what killed him requires an extended stay at Fallowfields; the help of their young friend Patrick and his father Harry; and the courage to face family secrets.
Scant puzzlement on offer here; the mystery is so pat Napoleon could solve it.