When bored young housewife Simone Hollingsworth misses bell-ringing practice-her latest effort to find something to do-no one is surprised. In fact, if old Mrs. Molfrey, her neighbor, didn't report it to Detective Chief Inspector Barnaby, Simone's disappearance might have gone unrecorded in Fawcett Green. But ever Barnaby isn't concerned-until a body is found. Soon, Barnaby is uncovering the passionate entanglements beneath the placid surface of Fawcett Green-and perhaps jeopardizing his career. Now, if he misconstrues the clue buried in Simone's garden-and a subtlety of human behavior his experienced eye should spot-a brutal killer may go free.