The Victoriana is a lovely old theater in the Frank Matcham style. It is an old music hall (with a reputed ghost) and is situated opposite the pier in the seaside town of Fairbourne on the south coast of England. During the season of 1955 one of the actors is murdered in his dressing room some time between the matinee and the evening performance. Suspicion falls on each of the other actors and actresses in the small company, as well as on the murdered man's wife, who is more famous than her husband. Then there are the other staff in the theater, the producer, the electricians, and the cleaners. Or did someone from an area of his life outside the theater gain access and kill him? Inspector Carding and Sergeant George Binns are investigating. The absence of an obvious motive for the murder makes their task far more difficult, as does the fact that the main suspects are all actors and actresses, used to playing a part. The tension builds up as secrets are gradually revealed, and the small cast become suspicious of each other. Yet to leave before the season finishes will point the finger at the murderer.
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Joan M. Moules is the author of It's One of Ours, The Straw Halter, and Tin Hats and Gas Masks.
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