Murder at the Villa Byzantine: An Antonia Darcy and Major Payne Investigation
by R.T. Raichev
Review by Mel Jacob
Soho Constable Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781569479148
Date: 19 April 2011 List Price $25.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /
R.T. Raichev newest mystery, Murder at the Villa Byzantine, features the husband and wife team of Antonia and Payne investigating the beheading of a Bulgarian woman, Stella Markoff. Police suspect her strange teenage daughter. Moon, the girl, has a fixation with blood and violence and a handkerchief found at the scene had the initials MM. She implores Payne to help her prove her innocence. From official release/information:
Product Description: When a birthday party for one of their Hampstead neighbors turns deadly, Antonia Darcy and Major Hugh Payne end up investigating the murder of one of Melisande Chevret's other guests. The aging actress becomes a natural suspect, as the victim was her love rival. But after the first murder, a second takes place at the Villa Byzantine. The owner of the house is royal biographer Tancred Vane, who swears he is innocent. And surely Catherine Hope, an elderly lady helping him with his research, can have nothing to do with it. A damning piece of evidence points to the victim's daughter--but why would that a teenage girl have a dainty silk handkerchief bearing her monogram? And would she drop it so conveniently beside her mother's body? As the questions mount, Antonia Darcy and Major Payne search desperately for answers.
(Source: Soho Constable)