The rediscovery of this well-loved jewel in the crown of crime novels began with a sympathetic TV adaptation some years ago. But Iles, consummate plot-creator that he is, has nevertheless a writer's tone of voice that can only be present in the novel. This was a book that reinvented the crime novel form. When Dr Bickleigh decides to murder his wife in the small but exclusive Devonshire hamlet of Wyvern's Cross, the (then) radical concept of announcing to the reader the identity of the murderer at the very beginning of the novel created a storm. Amazingly, despite years of imitation, the devise still functions as compellingly in the 90s as when the novel was first written. The beleaguered Bickleigh (and his mounting passion for Gwynfryd Rattery) is rightly recognised as one of the best-remembered protagonists of crime fiction, and there are few who will regret reacquainting themselves with this beautifully-crafted piece.