Wexford gets in the the grip of one of his obsessions when he suspects a crime has been committed and the death of an older musician of international fame might not have been accidental. Nobody believes Wexford (except his trusted partner Burden, of course.) Wexford's superiors are unwilling to allow him to entertain what they believe are baseless suspicions.Wexford, however, is convinced that there is something wrong about Natalie, the late flutist's daughter, who came back unexpectedly into her father's life after almost two decades of absence. Is Natalie who she says she is? Why is she behaving so suspiciously?
The dedicated detective is so committed to finding the truth that he travels to California on his own dime to find out the truth about his case. As readers, we get the added bonus of seeing Wexford and his wife Dora travel in the US and their reactions to this country.
Wexford's search for the truth does not end in the US, though. We will also see him travel to France in his attempt to crack this difficult case. In the end, however, the readers will still be surprised by the tangled web of complexities and coincidences in one of Wexford's most challenging cases.
I believe this is one of the best novels in the Wexford/Burden series. In my opinion, though, Wexford novels are less engaging than Rendell's stand-alone mysteries. For this reason, I give the book four stars.