In Raichev's third series entry (after The Death of Corrine) to feature mystery writer Antonia Darcy, Antonia gets caught up in a gothic tale involving a tragic car accident, the two women it brought together, and one of the drivers, now dying and wishing to make amends. Greed, jealousy, rampant emotions, and a killer lurk in the wings of this tale that mixes Henry James's psychological insight with Agatha Christie's whodunit plotting skills. Throw in a diabolically clever story line and the challenge to readers to figure out what is really going on, and Raichev once again triumphs in this totally fascinating game of wits. Highly recommended for all collections. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
At the start of Raichev's stylish third novel to feature mystery writer Antonia Darcy and her husband, Maj. Hugh Payne (after 2007's The Death of Corrine), the couple attend a literary festival in Hay-on-Wye. There they reluctantly befriend two unusual women-a femme fatale in a wheelchair, Beatrice "Bee" Ardleigh, and Bee's austere companion, Ingrid Delmar-whom Hugh dubs "Goldilocks and Cerberus." A few months later, Antonia and Hugh accept Bee's invitation to come see her in Oxfordshire, where Bee has just made a controversial marriage and Ingrid has been impersonating Bee on visits to a dying neighbor who plans to leave his home, Ospreys ("The secret house of death they used to call it"), to the National Trust. The twisty plot thickens with the murder of a shady, Chartreuse-drinking priest at Ospreys. Deft use of literary allusion and well-drawn if unsubtle characterization are among the strengths of this traditional whodunit. (Apr.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.