Superintendent Perry Trethowan was used to cases that involved people in high places, and in this one he finds himself at the top of the tree -- among the British royals. A Princess, albeit only a minuscule royal offshoot, with a snug little apartment in Kensington Palace and a snug little sum on the Civil List, is threatened -- but by whom, why, and exactly what is uncertain. Her circle consists mostly of boy-friends, and they are a motley lot, drawn from the worlds of politics, the stage, even the football field. But are they endangered too or are they part of the threat? The Princess (fresh as morning dew, and much more treacherous) trips gaily through the minefield, while around her men keep dying. But blood will out, especially blue blood, and by the time Perry Trethowan gets to the bottom of the case, a murderer has been brought to justice and not a few reputations tremble in the scales. Robert Barnard's ability to create entertaining plots in the classic tradition was recognised through multiple nominations for Edgar Awards in the States, and he received the 2003 CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for a lifetime of achievement.