Constable Evan Evans of the North Wales Police, a one-man force in tiny Llanfair (Evanly Choirs, 1999, etc.), is intrigued
by the latest venture of his schoolteacher girlfriend Bronwen Price. Along with a few other locals, she’s taking cooking lessons
from Madame Yvette Bouchard, owner and chef of the town’s new restaurant Chez Yvette. The restaurant has just begun to take
off when it becomes the second victim of the town arsonist—the first a cottage recently bought and renovated by a couple from
England. When a man’s body is found in the ashes of this fire, however, arrogant Peter Potter, an arson specialist, is sent to
Llanfair by Headquarters. Meanwhile, Evans and his friend Sergeant Watkins try to identify the body—now known to have been
stabbed to death before the fire. Trying to get past the victim’s false identity papers (found in his car) and probing Madame
Yvette’s past bring to light another restaurant fire, this one in England, and a newspaper report on the death, years ago, of
Yvette’s sea-loving husband. The information collected sends the intrepid pair to France for a short stay that discloses some choice
truths about Madame Yvette, though occasional references to drug-runners off the Welsh coast do keep muddying the waters.
Evans and the denizens of Llanfair continue to charm and amuse, but this time they’re the victims, along with the reader,
of the mystery’s mind-boggling confusion.