A third limp adventure for nebbishy bachelor Arnold Landon, expert on English architecture and farmland, assistant in the Northumberland Planning Office (Most Cunning Workmen, 1985). Development wheeler-dealers Wilson and Livingstone are proposing to take over Sarah Ellis's rundown Penbrook Farm, erect on it the Minford Twilight Home for oldsters, naming it for powerful Councillor Albert Minford, as part of a grandiose building scheme. At the same time, timid Sarah's loudly aggressive companion, Mildred Sauvage-Brown, is determined to protect the farm and tries to enlist Arnold's help. Meanwhile, Willington Hall is another ancient holding going down the tubes, as aristocratic Patrick Willington tries one harebrained scheme after another while son and heir Henry looks on helplessly. The murder of Sarah Ellis connects with Willington Hall in unexpected ways when Arnold discovers the motive for Sarah's death, unearths some unprovable business chicanery and finally makes a friend of the fierce Sauvage-Brown. Meandering and choppy, minimally helped by some intriguing bits and pieces of antique lore. A spunkier Arnold might lend some backbone to this series.