Foul smells, chilly dampness, and a fearful, untrusting, poverty-stricken populous characterize the setting of Candace Robbs first story about twenty year old Margaret Kerr. Margaret has come to the still small city of Edinburgh determined to find her missing husband, and to uncover the murderer of his young cousin. Intrigues abound with the occupation of the lowlands by King Edward Longshankss English troops, and with claimants John Balliol and Robert Bruce vying for the title of King of the Scots. The Historical Notes might have been fuller, offering a much needed crutch for those not seeped in Scotlands Wars of Independence. And the storys inconclusive ending is a rather too blatant signal that more Margaret Kerr stories will follow. That said, the story gives us a maturing, complicated female character who is feeling her way in a time when Scots are forced to choice sides.