Inspector Thomas Lynley is mystified when he's sent undercover to investigate the death of Ian Cresswell at the request of the man's uncle, the wealthy and influential Bernard Fairclough. The death has been ruled an accidental drowning, and nothing on the surface indicates otherwise. But when Lynley enlists the help of his friends Simon and Deborah St. James, the trio's digging soon reveals that the Fairclough clan is awash in secrets, lies, and motives.
Deborah's investigation of the prime suspect - Bernard's prodigal son Nicholas, a recovering drug addict - leads her to Nicholas's wife, a woman with whom she feels a kinship, a woman as fiercely protective as she is beautiful. Lynley and Simon delve for information from the rest of the family, including the victim's bitter ex-wife and the man he left her for, and Bernard himself. As the investigation escalates, the Fairclough family's veneer cracks, with deception and self-delusion threatening to destroy everyone from the Fairclough patriarch to Tim, the troubled son Ian left behind.
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"Starred Review. Tension would be greater with less verbiage, but this is still great George." - Booklist
"As usual in George's work, the process of detection reveals more about those doing the detecting than the mystery itself." - Publishers Weekly
"Pared-down George, weighing in at a svelte 600 pages, but still strewn with subplots, melodrama, melancholy, a wretchedly unhappy Havers and the impossibly heroic, impossibly nice Thomas Lynley." - Kirkus Reviews
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Elizabeth George was born Susan Elizabeth George in Warren, Ohio.
She is a graduate of University of California in Riverside. She also attended California State University at Fullerton, where she was awarded a master's degree in Counseling/Psychology and an honorary doctorate of humane letters.
Professionally, she started out as a teacher. She was employed at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana initially, but there she gave in to her bent for organized labor and was summarily fired along with ten other teachers for union activity. She moved on to El Toro High School in El Toro, California (now called Lake Forest, California), where she remained for the rest of her career as a high school English teacher. While employed there, she was selected Orange County Teacher of the Year, a tribute ...
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