A neatly plotted, economically written story of manipulation--beginning when Major Richard Camber hires slow-moving, heavy-thinking detective Samson to find his granddaughter Caroline. Where is Caroline? Well, up until recently she has been in the company of a cult called Eventide Joy, mesmerized by cult leader Irving O. But now she's been kidnapped for deprogramming by young anti-cults crusader Stephen Hungerford (who's sexually ambivalent) and money-hungry psychologist James Brown--their services paid for by Caroline's mother (against grandpa Camber's wishes). So Samson's secretary Shandy--whip-smart, pregnant--soon tracks down the duo's hideaway, a cottage in forbidding fen country. Strange things have been happening out there among the fens, however: Brown is now buried in swampland; Hungerford is in Caroline's thrall; and sleuths Samson and Shandy almost become mere bystanders--as events play themselves out. . . with a final corrosive twist. Another low-key, small-scale entry by the author of A Charmed Death (1984, p. 1073)--but swifter and more steadily absorbing this time around.