A long-winded outing for banker-sleuth Mark Treasure (Advertise for Treasure, etc.). The governing body of Litchester Cathedral is tied on whether or not to sell its 13th-century copy of the Magna Carts for a badly needed million dollars. Treasure arrives to cast a deciding vote, but before that happens the aged verger Mr. Pounder, routinely on guard in the documents room, is found dead amid the ashes of books--and the Magna Carta. It turns out that Pounder left a tidy, inexplicable fortune, raising questions about his connection with recluse farmer Daras, known to possess 17th-century copies of the manuscript. Red herrings abound, as do politics, patronage and sex, in the small world of the Cathedral close, its officials, their wives and girlfriends. There are two more deaths before Treasure solves the puzzle, but only the most ardent fans of the British traditional will be in at the finish of this overelaborate, overplotted, ultimately boring exercise.