When Hetheridge saves the outspoken, impetuous young detective from getting the sack, siding with her against Scotland Yard's powerful male hierarchy, his cold, elegantly balanced world spins out of control. Summoned to London's fashionable Belgravia to investigate the brutal murder of a financier, Hetheridge must catch the killer while coping with his growing attraction to Kate, the reappearance of an old flame, and the secret that emerges from his own past.
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In London's fashionable Chelsea, a Halloween bash goes terribly wrong. Emmeline Wardle, daughter of a frozen-foods baron, throws a party that results in the demise of two university schoolmates. Handsome golden boy Trevor Parsons is dead. So is pasty computer nerd Clive French. Both died on the Wardle estate within minutes of one another, and both died the same way - an axe to the skull. Given the social connections of all involved, New Scotland Yard sends a real baron to investigate.
Anthony Hetheridge, ninth baron of Wellegrave and chief superintendent for Scotland Yard, will marry Kate Wakefield in three weeks. It's inevitable - the invitations are out, the flowers are ordered, the cake is chosen. But murder waits for no man - and no wedding.
Modern art dealer Granville Hardwick has a way with people - a way of making them wish he were dead. His London gallery is filled with works of questionable merit, his dating pool consists of other men's wives, and his home is the eyesore of a fine old neighborhood. So when Hardwick turns up dead, bashed on the head by a rather tasteless reproduction, it's Hetheridge and his new bride, Kate, who embark on solving the case