The third--and weakest--case for Inspector Gautier of the turn-of-the-century SÃ»retÃ‰. The victim is the Abbe Didier, stabbed in the confessional of his Paris church--a chapel frequented by the rich and powerful. The prime suspects: debutante Marie-ThÃ‰rÃ¨se de Saules, whose marriage plans the bossy priest was interfering with; daring novelist Juliette Prevot, whose latest work was branded as blasphemous by the priest; a shady Italian poet-Casanova who was romancing Marie-ThÃ‰rÃ¨se (and who was overheard quarreling with the priest); and others with an interest in Marie-ThÃ‰rÃ¨se's love life. And before the culprit is caught--with a long, convoluted explanation of his implausible motive and method--Inspector G. makes his usual round of Parisian locales (coffee-house debates, the circus), is seduced and near-seduced by suspects, solves related crimes, and saves Marie-ThÃ‰rÃ¨se from suicide. Rich atmosphere as before, but this time the pace is creaky, and the plot is full of holes.