Were four young women trying to rescue a drowning man on a Cornish river in 1920—or to kill him? That’s the intriguing puzzle bestseller Todd (the mother-son writing team of Caroline and Charles Todd) sets for Rutledge in the inspector’s solid 18th outing (following 2015’s A Fine Summer’s Day). According to the women—one of whom, Kate Gordon, was almost Rutledge’s relative by marriage—they spotted Harry Saunders in a sinking boat and tried to get him to safety. But they weren’t up to the task, and Saunders would have drowned but for the intervention of a farmer, Bradford Trevose, who insists to the police that he saw the women trying to murder Saunders. Evidence of a blow to Saunders’s head, which left him unconscious, supports Trevose’s version of events. As Rutledge strives to reconcile the conflicting testimonies, he must also resolve some clear-cut crimes of violence. Atmospheric scenes of suspense, set in the lonely Cornish countryside, are a plus. Agent: Jane Chelius, Jane Chelius Literary Agency. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/30/2015 Release date: 02/01/2016 Genre: Fiction
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