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An actor is dead, and the cast of suspects grows, but the finger of a hostile coroner is pointing directly at amateur detective Nick Revill. With as many twists to its plot as a Shakespearean play and betrayals compounded as often as in Troilus and Cressida, Philip Gooden again offers a strong historical mystery with an wonderfully intriguing plot. With some surprise, actor Nick Revill learns that his boyhood friend Peter Agate has arrived in London, to try his hand at acting. While Nick wants to welcome the competition in his stage company, which is mounting a private production of Troilus and Cressida for the lawyers of the Middle Temple, he is a bit resentful of Agate's warm reception—but not so resentful, he'd have stabbed his friend to death. Another violent death follows, and it, too, patently implicates Nick. An aristocratic pair of siblings, a flashy troublemaker from a rival troupe, a former actor who once saw the devil onstage—all stand among Nick's suspects. But the hangman's noose is tightening around his own neck.