Mrs. Jeffries always keeps her friends close and now must keep an enemy even closer if she is going to catch a killer. . . .
Inspector Nigel Nivens is not a nice man or a good investigator. In fact, he’s terrible at his job and has always done everything he can to make life difficult for Inspector Witherspoon. But even his powerful family can’t help him after he maliciously tried to hobble Witherspoon’s last homicide investigation. He’s been sent to a particularly difficult precinct in the East End of London as penance.
When a paid informant is found shot in an alley, Nivens thinks that if he can crack the case, he’ll redeem himself and have a much-needed chance at impressing his superiors. But there’s one big problem with his plan—Niven’s distinct antique pistol is found at the scene of the crime and even more evidence is uncovered that links the Inspector to the murder.
Despite their mutual dislike for Nivens, Mrs. Jeffries and Inspector Witherspoon know the man isn’t a cold-blooded killer. Now they’ll just have to prove it. . . .
In Brightwell's energetic 39th Victorian mystery (after 2019's Mrs. Jeffries and the Alms of the Angel), Mrs. Jeffries, the smart housekeeper of Insp. Gerald Witherspoon, is on the case when her employer's well-born colleague, Insp. Nigel Nivens, is implicated in the fatal shooting of iceman Bert Santorini in Whitechapel, and Witherspoon's superior, who's eager to end press accusations that the Metropolitan Police will cover up a crime committed by one of their own, assigns the inspector to the investigation. Though the weaselly Nivens has double-crossed Witherspoon in the past to get ahead, Mrs. Jeffries believes that everyone deserves justice, and deploys her fellow servants and other associates to pump residents for information. They soon learn that Santorini had numerous enemies, was romancing his landlady as well as a barmaid, seemed quite friendly with a notorious pickpocket, had an unexplained cache of cash, and may have sent innocent men to prison through false testimony. But why is Nivens acting so suspiciously? Memorable characters resonate amid the unusual scenario of an unsympathetic prime suspect. Both longtime fans and readers new to the series will have a grand time. \n