Berkley, Dec 2004, 5.99, 224 pp.
During World War II in England, the villagers have seen too much change in too short a time to want any further disruptions in their way of life. Lady Elizabeth Hartleigh Compton of the Manor House subtly soothes ruffled feathers of the locals, tired by food rationing, the invasion of the Americans quartered in British homes, and the curfews. Even Elizabeth the great cannot get the residents to accept the new munitions factory run by Douglas McNally.
At the opening ceremony, Elizabeth has the honor of cutting the ribbon, but is taken aback when Douglas informs her that he is receiving death threats in the mail. Shortly thereafter, a fire breaks out at the factory killing Douglas and a charwoman. Following a rather quick inquiry, the fire marshal declares an accident occurred, but Elizabeth wonders in light of the letters whether murder happened. She learns that the victims were locked inside an office unable to get out. Totally convinced that murder took place, Elizabeth intends to prove that and uncover the identity of the culprit.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner