At "The Hollyhocks" old people's home, the inhabitants are "waiting for the scythe". But while they are waiting...Lady Celia is running a blackmailing business, Mr Cross keeps a tally of fellow residents' deaths on the back of his wardrobe, and then there is the rabid old Scots nationalist, and Mrs Green, a woman with a mysterious past. Hardly surprising in this environment that Mrs Bellamy decides she can't take any more and slits her throat.
When Matron hushes it up, Lady Celia sees an opportunity to expand her blackmailing operation. Meanwhile two new incomers disturb the life of the home further; Mrs Feinberg, a sprightly Jewish woman of whom the other residents are immediately suspicious, and the elegant Mr Rufus.
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Well worth the read