Wealthy London banker Ronald Chapman is found dead – a suicide, apparently, though the police are still on the case. Janet, his beautiful widow and sole heir to their fortune, finally freed from her loveless marriage, turns to her beloved Shakespeare for solace: “After life’s fitful fever, he sleeps well; nothing can touch him further.” As she awaits the release of Ronald’s body for burial, there are arrangements to be made and appearances to uphold. She has only one problem: Ronald’s best friend, who is expected by family and friends to speak at the funeral … doesn’t actually exist. Can the Extra! agency – specialists in the rental of fake hecklers, phony cuckolds, inexistent relatives, sham boyfriends, and counterfeit job candidates – help? Extra!’s boss, Mike Fielding, is ready for anything that’s more or less within the law and might be approved by his alter ego, private-eye Philip Marlowe. The job falls on failed actor Will Power, who is buffeted between the dull reality of his own life and the exciting, romantic world of make-believe in this wicked comedy of deceit, treachery and love.