Gemma, Duncan, and the boys are back in their Notting Hill house and enjoying a quiet spring in London when Gemma receives a plea for help from her friend and neighbor, Erika Rosenthal. Erika has never shared much of her past, other than telling Gemma that she and her husband came to London before the war as refugees from the emerging Nazi regime in Germany. Her husband was a historian and was found murdered in a local park. His death was never solved. Now Erika asks for Gemma's help. As Gemma works backwards, interviewing the staff at the auction house and looking into the records of David Rosenthal's death, her viewpoint is interwoven with Erika's vivid memories of her life as a young woman in London during and after the war. Then a young woman at the auction house is murdered and suddenly the case becomes very much centered in the present.
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Erika Rosenthal has always been secretive with her friend and neighbor, Detective Inspector Gemma James, about her past, except for one telling detail: She and her long-dead husband, David, came to London as refugees from Nazi Germany. But now the elderly woman needs Gemma's help. A unique piece of jewelry stolen from her years ago has mysteriously turned up at a prestigious London auction house. Erika believes the theft may be tied to her husband's death, which had always been assumed a suicide.
Gemma has a tough challenge. She must navigate the shadowy and secretive world of London's monied society to discover the jewelry's connection to David's murderer. However, the cold case needs to be put back on the books and possibly into the hands of her partner, Duncan Kincaid. When a second, present-day murder kicks the investigation into high gear, Gemma becomes more determined to exact justice for Erika—in a case that will have lasting repercussions.