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by Simon Brett

Pub Date: Aug. 20th, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-59414-758-6
Publisher: Five Star

Fethering neighbors Jude and Carole (Death Under the Dryer, 2007, etc.) once again one-up the police in solving a village crime.

On a visit to the local betting shop to place wagers for flu-stricken Harold Peskett, 92, Jude is put off by the racism of estate agent Hamish Urquhart and his son Ewan. After a young man enters the shop looking ill, then leaves dripping blood and collapses in an alley, Jude finds him stabbed to death. She and Carole quickly sally forth to interview the cops, the betting shop regulars and the dead man’s sister, Zofia, who’s flown in from Poland to discover why her brother Tadeusz was murdered. The trail leads to Clincham College and a lothario who wouldn’t mind kipping down with Jude, even though he’s been busy at home. Meanwhile, Carole has connected with Gerald Hume, a retired accountant who wants to be her pal, and the sleuthing duo learns that the Urquhart daughter’s summer fling with the dead Polish lad aroused the distaste of her xenophobic family. A few rounds at the pubs and a stakeout help Jude and Carole uncover a romance gone awry that will be resolved in the most appalling way.

A so-so plot, but a nice few hours in the country with the ever-expanding cast of congenial Fethering villagers.