Baghdad, 1928. The explorer and writer, Gertrude Bell, died of a presumed overdose in the city of Ur. But did she really take her own life, or was she killed? A letter has recently surfaced in which Bell expressed the fear that her life was in danger. At the request of her friend at the British Intelligence Service, Agatha Christie travels to Ur to investigate. When she arrives, she discovers a group gathered at the archaeological dig whose secrets and motives rival those of Christie’s own characters. There is, indeed, a killer in the camp, and Agatha must race to discover the culprit even as more violence takes place.
London, 1937. Best selling writer and playwright, Josephine Tey, is in London to supervise a BBC production of her play, Queen of Scots. When one of the BBC’s best-known broadcasters is murdered, Josephine’s friend, Detective Chief Inspector, Archie Penrose, asks her to help with the investigation. Shortly thereafter, another murder occurs, and this time the victim is the lead in Josephine’s play, and the mistress of the dead broadcaster. With Archie’s attention taken up by another case, Josephine works to determine if adultery and jealousy led to the murders, or if there are older, more complex motives at work.