1954 mystery novel by the late Rosemary Focaccia, featuring her celebrated creation Inspector Framingham. It was her last novel.

In the small town of Malvolio, MI, a body is found floating in a vat of rum at the local distillery. Meanwhile, an unidentified amnesiac appears at the local orphanage; his only memory is of falling into a vat.

The local law enforcement officers are unable to establish the identity of the floater, nor that of the amnesiac, and Inspector Framingham is called out of retirement in Biloxi to take on the case. Over the course of 435 suspense-filled pages, odd correspondences emerge: The floater's clothing contains particles of soil unique to Inspector Framingham's hometown of La Grange, TX; the amnesiac displays an unnerving familiarity with the nuts and bolts of police work; Inspector Framingham admits a fondness for rum, and finds himself unable to locate Biloxi on a map. The floater's body does not decompose, while the amnesiac develops necrosis in his extremities.

By the end of the novel, Inspector Framingham has lapsed into a vegetative state and the amnesiac has taken over the investigation. On the last page, his memory is restored and he reveals the awful truth.

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