The dauntless Celia Grant, amateur sleuth and near-bankrupt horticulturist, agrees to design an Elizabethan garden for Clintbury, Victor Stratton's country house-and then finds herself in the middle of a murder, a possible drug-smuggling ring, and tangled relationships that would keep a family therapist busy for years. Moreover, young Porter from the Regional Crime Squad, although willing to use Celia as a stalking-horse, pooh-poohs her deductions-mainly that Victor is an innocent being shanghaied by his mistress, his lawyer, his brother, and his servants. As Celia frets her way from one plot complication to another, the real country-house secret emerges-with repercussions for the Picasso estate, insurance companies, and art lovers everywhere. Droll insights into the Elizabethan love of pelicans, the use of flowers in Shakespeare, and small-business money- management (Celia's plant nursery). Fans of the genteel, cozy English novel will adore it.