Versatile, risk-taking Lovesey (The False Inspector Dew, etc.) offers a crisp, rather nasty slice of black comedy here: an all-female variation on Highsmith's Strangers on a Train set in atmospheric postwar London. Mousy, mild Rose Bell is miserably wed to a womanizing, debt-ridden civil servant--who's on the verge of cashing in a life-insurance policy. Her WAAF chum from WW II days, flippant and racy Antonia, has married rich--but wants to leave her stodgy husband for her handsome professor-lover. So, with Rose's very timid encouragement, Antonia promptly disposes of slimy Mr. Bell with a platform push in the London tube. And, to Rose's horror, Antonia expects a favor or two in return. Will Rose help Antonia to poison dear, rich hubby Hector? Or will she fight back and somehow outwit ruthless, sneaky Antonia (who has more than one murder in mind)? The ultimate answer is something of a letdown, but the narrative path--including cat-fights, forged government documents, and body-disposal problems--is twisty, stylish, and darkly amusing.