Agatha Troy-Alleyn, Inspector Roderick Alleyn’s beautiful young wife, is engaged to paint a portrait of Sir Henry Ancred, famed Shakespearean actor and family patriarch, but she senses all is not well in the dreary castle of Ancreton. When old Henry is found dead after a suspicious dinner and an unfortunate family fracas, Agatha enlists the knowledge of her husband to determine who among a cast of players would have a motive for murder — and the theatrical gift to carry it out.