A small town community is shocked when an elderly woman is killed by her niece who flees taking the little money that was there in the house after stabbing her aunt. The niece had always been considered strange by the people in the town but nobody thought that she would stoop to murdering her aunt who had brought her up after the death of her parents. The town collects money and asks the Sheriff to hire a detective agency to bring the culprit to justice. Enter thirty plus detective Steve Gregory who easily traces the young twenty-something girl and immediately falls head-over-heels in love with her. Convinced that she is innocent he takes up her cause against the police force of the US, the Sheriff, and even his own agency. Page after page is henceforth devoted to their flight and the innocence of the girl, epitomized by her (Victorian) modesty.
This turned out to be such a drag that I was surprised that it was written by the same person who wrote the interesting police-procedural Sleep Long, My Love. And what is with obsession of authors with pitiful waifs who have always been persecuted by the society at large? (The question as to why all members of the community would take a dislike to the girl who is actually so charming, naive, helpful not to mention attractive is never answered properly).
If you like books where the heroine keeps on insisting ad-nauseam that men have only one particular interest in her but that she would not in any way compromise with her modesty than this is the book for you, otherwise don’t waste your time on this soggy book.
First Line: When the conductor stepped into the coach and bawled, “White River”…..
Publishing Details: NY: Doubleday and Company, 1965.
First Published: 1965
Source: Open Library