Lady Antonia Fraser has followed the tradition of such British mystery writers as Dorothy L. Sayers, Emma Lathen, Ruth Rendell, P. D. James, and Patricia Highsmith. Using her knowledge of the British aristocracy, history, Parliament, royalty, entertainment and literary circles, television, and contemporary affairs, she has introduced various issues along with a rich blend of characters. As a heroine, Jemima Shore is a mixture of the traditional and contemporary woman caught up in often extraordinary circumstances. Some of these adventures are handled with black humor; all are dramatic and suspenseful. Developing a mystery series after writing several successful historical biographies has helped Fraser provide richness of characters and settings. The drama of real life has been successfully transferred to the mystery setting, and readers will perceive the changes in contemporary Great Britain much more easily after reading this series, which has captured the sense and complexity of that modern society.