A preference for scones at teatime, a penchant for sensible clothes, and a knack for solving crimes are all part of Mrs. Sheila Malory's irresistible British character. And not since Jane Marple's St. Mary Mead has there been a village more suited for a cozy mystery than Mrs. Malory's Taviscombe, a scenic seaside town where it is difficult to keep a secret, let alone get away with murder. Yet, in Mrs. Malory's sixth appearance as an amateur sleuth, a poisoned almond tart is the first clue that someone has. It all begins with Mrs. Dudley, doyenne of the Taviscombe "mafia, " a group of aging matrons who pick up every crumb of gossip and see the most shocking things through lace curtains with their eagle eyes. And during a lovely chat with Mrs. Malory, she just happens to mention some troubling things about Dr. Cowley, a local physician. The greedy M.D. plans to turn a prime oceanside building, occupied by the very elderly Miss Graham, into a profitable nursing home. And what will happen to that poor soul if she refuses to move? As Mrs. Malory fears, the answer is most distressing: Poor Miss Graham is cruelly, unkindly, and most diabolically killed with her favorite dessert. Of course, it appears that Dr.
Cowley must have done it - except that he has an ironclad alibi. Now Mrs. Malory is snooping in earnest, hoping it will lead her to intriguing revelations: about the physician with ambition, about a weakwilled nephew and his pushy wife, about a pretty neighbor of questionable virtue, and about a very large sum of money. Of course, Mrs. Malory's persistent inquiries may also get her killed.