The sign on her office door reads “ALEXIS J. SMITH - Discreet Inquiries,” but a new client of her fledgling detective agency seems to think it means Murder Incorporated. The client, one Kate Faraday, is a former schoolmate (Sacramento High, class of ‘41) who wants to hire Lexie to find her husband, Frank. During their initial interview it becomes clear that she doesn't want him back “dead or alive,” she wants him dead! If it were anyone else, the intrepid young private investigator would never have taken the job, but there is a problem. Lexie herself has been in love with Frank ever since they were all together in high school. She makes a desperate decision to find him and warn him of his wife’s mad intentions. She travels to England and finds Frank staying at a quaint country inn called The Old Vicarage, next to a little Norman church still haunted by a 12th Century ghost. What she discovers reveals a woman bent on vengeance, not only on her husband, but on Lexie, as well. Are they both marked for murder? How all this plays out, and culminates in a shoot-out at The Old Vicarage, is the climax of the story—but not the end.
This review is based on an advance copy received from the author but reflects my own personal opinion. This is a tale that takes place in the 1940's when women were expected to be secretaries, school teachers or housewives. Alexis Smith (originally Alice Smith) is a type of maverick for her time. Inspired by movies of the time, she changes her name and decides to pursue a career as a private investigator. Unfortunately she is not very successful and is in danger of … more