Contrivances undermine the plot of Bowen’s 16th Molly Murphy whodunit (after 2015’s Away in a Manger). In 1906, the refusal of Molly’s husband, NYPD Capt. Daniel Sullivan, to go along to get along has earned him the distrust of his corrupt superiors. Fortunately, the head of the Secret Service, John Wilkie, offers him a covert mission working for President Theodore Roosevelt. While Daniel is in Washington, D.C., Molly meets Rose Endicott, whose husband is also away on business. Rose is stunned to spot her husband in a moving picture filmed in San Francisco, and when Molly accompanies her to the theater to see for herself, she ends up spotting Daniel in the film as well. After Molly receives a coded letter from Daniel requesting her presence, she travels across the country, accompanied by her toddler, to help him. Implausible developments make this a weak installment, which displays little of Bowen’s usual imagination and skill. Agent: Meg Ruley, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/11/2016 Release date: 03/01/2016 Genre: Fiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.