McMullen is especially taken with blackmail--and here she introduces John Upshaw, a seedy type who arrives at the Irish country estate of the late Paul Kinsella, claiming that he has information sure to ruin lawyer Kinsella's good name among the county aristocracy. Kinsella's widow tries ineffectually to cope with pushy Upshaw, and then two young locals die suspiciously. Could it have something to do with the blackmail? Or possibly with the weird goings-on at nearby Castle Dunragh, occupied at the moment by General Nou, late of Vietnam? The sleuthing, what little there is here, is done by Conor Naill, a visiting Kinsella cousin from N.Y.--who spends rather more time vying with Kinsella scion Fitz for the affections of yet another cousin-in-residence, writer Sara Parry. Short on detection, long on charm--another winning McMullen diversion for those who like their mild-mannered suspense heavily laced with local color and glossy romance.