Wycliffe and his wife, Helen, are staying in a seaside cottage to give him a chance to recover from an illness. He is intrigued by a run-down country house, Kellycoryk, close to where they are staying and encounters the owner, Roger Kemp, when he trespasses on his property.
When Roger's wife, Bridget, disappears in mysterious circumstances Wycliffe finds himself involved in the case. Inevitably when Bridget's abandoned car is found at the top of a cliff there are some awkward questions to be asked and the death in a boating accident of Roger's first wife, Julia, is brought to the fore again.
What follows is an interesting and complex story with many unpleasant undercurrents and a dysfunctional family. I thought it was well written and there are sufficient suspects to keep most readers guessing until close to the end. The book examines some interesting themes about the burdens inheritance places in families and how the past can prevent people living in the present.
If you enjoy your crime novels when they are written in the classic mould then give this series a try. It started with Wycliffe and the Three Toed Pussy (Wycliffe Mystery)
but the books can be read in any order. I can remember watching the television series starring Jack Shepherd many years ago and enjoying it though I actually think the books are better than the series.