Following the disappearance of a big-time bank robber,
Detective-Inspector Neil Carter of Scotland Yard is sent
unofficially by his Chief to question the man's lovely, enigmatic
wife in the idyllic village where she has retired to her father's
house. Ostensibly a holiday-maker, dallying with the lady, and
striking up a friendship with her perceptive 12-year-old brother,
Neil soon decides he is on 'a delightful wild goose chase'. But his
cover is blown when he is forced to take action in the face of
another and far more horrible crime. Although he has no official
role in its investigation, Neil has never felt so personally
involved in a crime, finding himself strangely troubled at the
possibility that a clergyman could be guilty of murder and
sacrilege. The inhabitants of the village are vividly alive through
the eyes of Neil and young Tony, and in their reactions to the
outrage in their midst. Neil's part in the two investigations ends
only on his final return to London, with the sharpest shock of his
whole extraordinary 'holiday'.
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