What distinguishes this author's mysteries from the rest out there is a depth in exploring what motivates people's behavior and acts, no matter whether these are acts of love and loyalty or hatered and shalowness.
Anyone coming to Barbara Vine for the first time would be much better off getting A Fatal Inversion, House of Stairs or A Dark-Adapted Eye.
Although the ending wasn't my style, I don't feel that I wasted my time in reading it. I couldn't wait to read the next chapter to see what happened to these sad characters and hoped that they would find some happiness at some point before the end.
I can't say that the ending was to my liking however, isn't that what makes the world go round...? Rendell/Vine is still one of my favorite authors.