When twin brothers Roger and Neville Shandon are murdered by poisoned darts in Whistlefield's famous hedge maze, Sir Clinton Driffield arrives to restore order. He finds two terrified witnesses - visitors to the estate - and clues aplenty in this brilliantly conceived and meticulously realized country-house mystery.
Ivor Maddox has his hands more full than ever, with his wife Sue expecting a baby. To add to this, he also faces several of the most complex and frustrating cases of his career: the killing of a thirteen-year-old whose grief-stricken father takes the law into his own hands, and the shooting of a wealthy businessman, which sends Maddox digging into the past.
Most extraordinary of all are the corpses that keep turning up under the floorboards of abandoned houses all over the country. And when the vital clue to the identity of the mass murderer turns up in Maddox's territory, it's up to him to solve one of the crimes of the century.
The Inspector, anticipating a routine investigation, finds conflicting stories, poison pen letters, and damning information about Hyson. It takes Sir Clinton Driffield to untangle the case and prove that the cast-iron alibi is the one which should arouse suspicion.
Eustace is in financial difficulties, and in love; all his problems would be solved were he himself heir presumptive to old Lord Barradys. Other members of the elder branch are still living - but accidents do happen.
Yet Eustace is not the only family member with an interest in the inheritance . . .
Many were the potential murderers - some of them guests at the diner. But when a second murder takes place it precipitates a crisis in which investigator Sir Clinton Driffield must penetrate a maze of conflicting evidence to spot the murderer.
Aunt Evelyn is a violent drunk, and one evening Joyce speculates to Leslie that if she fended of one of her aunt's violent attacks and her aunt died of 'one of her heart attacks' she could hardly be held accountable - could she?
Leslie isn't really sure. And the next day Aunt Evelyn dies suddenly.
Mr. Shaitana is famous as a flamboyant party host. Nevertheless, he is a man of whom everybody is a little afraid. So when he boasts to Hercule Poirot that he considers murder an art form, the detective has some reservations about accepting a party invitation to view Shaitana’s “private collection.”
Indeed, what begins as an absorbing evening of bridge is to turn into a more dangerous game altogether.…