Irresistible rogue Lovejoy--back home in East Anglia after a stint in the States (The Great California Game, 1991), between sessions with a pet snake and its voluptuous owner, ""making smiles"" (romps in bed) with a talk-show host's wife, and training the mayor's wife, Luna, in the fine art of faking antiques--finds time to query the death of another antique scammer, old Prammie Joe, who may have fallen afoul of the plans of a dollop broker (a storer of stolen goods for ten percent of the resale price). Also afoot are a certain descendant's plans to avenge her family for deaths imposed on it back in 1694 by the Witch-Finder General, which will soon cause Lovejoy to roust the larcenous residents of the Sampney Young Ladies Academy and rescue another antique-dealer chum from a well in a priory. One more will die; the mayor will prove to have a scare of his own; and Lovejoy, of course, will find another, nubile benefactress before all is set to right. Rambunctious, ribald, and, at times, rendered in such idiosyncratic syntax as to be incomprehensible. Crammed with antique lore, historical asides, and verve.