With talk of war all over the radio waves, Henry Gamadge is back in Maine, this time by invitation of Detective Mitchell whom he so aptly helped in Unexpected Night. Mitchell has a real puzzler on his hands: three different children have been poisoned with deadly nightshade, and there is no motive that could possibly link all three poisonings, beside the fact that the children all live in the same small community. Could the Gypsies, whose encampment is nearby, be involved? And was the death of a state trooper at about the same time a mere coincidence? Gamadge and Mitchell will eventually answer all these questions, while Elizabeth Daly paints a picture of a small community at the end of summer and right before a world war.