Back in Sacramento again, where the sign on the door of her detective agency reads ALEXIS J. SMITH—Discreet Inquiries, Lexie finds that her old room at Mrs. Snidely's Establishment for Young Ladies (a fancy name for a boardinghouse) has been let to someone else while she was away on a case in England. The new tenant is supposedly a ballerina, and a defector from the Russian Bolshoi, seeking political asylum in this country. But is she? Lexie doubts the story and begins to investigate, determined to get at the truth, while ignoring the danger to herself. With that case successfully concluded, she is free to accept another assignment from her friend Inspector Harry Hawkins at Scotland Yard. The case sounds bizarre from the beginning, but gets more so with each turn of events. It seems that a Russian count, a nephew of the late Tzar Nicholas II, is living in exile in Oxfordshire, with his young American bride. In Harry's opinion, the countess is more than a little mad, demanding that Scotland Yard recover her dog, a Russian wolfhound, which she claims has been stolen by—of all people—Humphrey Bogart! It will take all of Lexie's skill and unflinching determination to connect the dots, right up to the deadly conclusion.
This review is based on an advanced copy received from the writer's publicist but relects my own opinion. I had already reviewed and greatly enjoyed Death By Misadventure, the first in the author's Alexis Smith novels. So when I was presented with reviewing this work, I jumped at the chance. I was not disappointed. This book is a fairly quick read and is divided into two tales. Alexis must first solve the theft of many high end fashion items from a very exclusive … more