A primer on why even attorneys should avoid illegal immigrants.
When Mirko Dragunovic walks into the office of Jules Carlisle, the only lawyer working in her firm on Maundy Thursday, she thinks her biggest problem will be brushing up on immigration law. Instead, Jules, the adopted daughter of Baroness Anne Williams, finds that Mirko’s quest to identify his brother, one of several illegal immigrants suffocated in a container while being shipped to England, opens a fatal can of worms. While in police custody, her client is killed before he can tell what he knows about his brother being smuggled into the country. Jules’s boss, Paul Jenkins, an expert in immigration law, tries to ease her off the case, but she keeps getting involved, courted by the gentleman farmer for whom Mirko worked and the investigating MI5 officer. When a tabloid reporter threatens to put her affair with a married man on the front page, she kicks him in the shins and heads with her mother to the lettuce farm where Mirko worked to avoid the devastating publicity. Once among the lettuces, however, they are in peril, as the smuggling ring regroups and zeroes in on them.
A fast-paced, ripped-from-the-headlines plot, but the cutesy preoccupation Neel (O Gentle Death, 2001, etc.) lavishes on class, and her maternal indulgence of the heroine, may undermine the appeal for all but like-minded, full-blooded English nationals.