Cunning and evil, poisoned by a lifetime of love withheld, Eileen Cartwright has an unrivaled passion for revenge. When the rich, middle-aged widow falls in love with her lawyer, she goes to fatal lengths to make him hers. Prosecutor Helen West is assigned to the case, but when Eileen's extraordinary evil reaches out even from behind prison bars, the investigation reaches a climax of frightening and frenzied violence.
This first novel by a London solicitor is wonderfully British, devilishly intricate and, once the reader settles in, compelling indeed. Eileen Cartwright, a rich, middle-aged widow of less than lofty moral standards, arranges the murder of her solicitor's wife, under the mistaken impression that the act will win his affections. But the hired murderer, would-be private detective Stanislaus Jaskowski, is caught almost immediately--and confesses all. The trying task of proving the widow Cartwright's role in the crime falls to police superintendent Geoffrey Bailey and prosecutor Helen West--who are slowly and deliciously drawn together personally and professionally. While the case comes to involve Jaskowski's sons, Edward and Peter, the horrifying truth is revealed as the reader gradually learns the motives driving each of the marvelously drawn characters in this auspicious first volume in Pocket's new hardcover mystery series. Major ad/promo; BOMC alternate.