As stodgily narrated by George Howard, young American secretary to Lord Alfred Tigraines: a 1914 murder case set in the neighborhood of Lord T.'s country estate. The murder victim is Lord Tigraines' new neighbor, the celebrated archaeologist Sir James Hart, a victim of poisoning. And the primary suspects include the dead man's maid Susan (a would-be actress), and her young actor-friend Timothy Loft, an apparent fugitive. But while Scotland Yard and a local inquest go astray, Lord Alfred, working from a few frail clues, comes up with the actual solution--one that involves the Hart family-history, an Agatha Christie-ish switcheroo, and a second corpse. A fair enough puzzle--more suited to short-story than short-novel (138 pp.) length--but Lord Alfred remains a blandly faceless sleuth, while secretary Howard is a most undramatic Watson.