Just a week away from his only daughter's wedding, Inspector Luke Thanet gets a phone call that saves him from writing his speech for the reception, but presents him with an even more challenging problem. Jessica Dander, a journalist for the regional newspaper, has been found dead with a broken neck at the foot of her own staircase.
Was it simply an accident, or, as evidence suggests, was she pushed? And investigation just yields more questions. Who left Jessica's front door open and why? Who called the police and disappeared before the authorities arrived? Why is her high-heeled shoe in an odd position on the third step from the top? Who was the mysterious prowler Jessica reported to the police? And who didn't have reason to hate Jessica, an angry, irascible woman who may have let loose her fury on those around her just once too often?