In 1937, Prof. Matthew Weir was arrested, tried and found not guilty of poisoning his interfering sister-in-law, but most observers said his good fortune was due to a good defense counsel and an overly confident local police force. To escape the prying eyes of his unforgiving neighbors, Weir packed up his family and moved to them into a smallish Tudor manor house not too far from Oxford. But when his wife, an amateur herbalist, dies of poisoning in the spring of 1939, the local police—fearing Weir might luck out again—call in Scotland Yard. Chief Inspector Dan Pardoe and Detective Sergeant Salt aren’t so sure that the professor murdered his wife—or his sister-in-law for that matter. There are any number of other possible suspects in and about the manor house, including a mysterious older woman who rented a nearby cottage and befriended Mrs. Weir.
This classic 1939 Golden Age detective novel marked the American debut of Dorothy Bowers, a very talented writer in the Sayers school who might well have joined the ranks of the masters of the genre had she not died from tuberculosis at the age of 46 after completing only five novels.
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