The Vault

Publisher: Anchor Canada

The impossible has happened. Chief Inspector Reg Wexford has retired. He and his wife now divide their time between Kingsmarkham and a coachhouse in Hampstead belonging to their actress daughter, Sheila. For all the benefits of a more relaxed way of life, Wexford misses being the law.

But a chance meeting in a London street, with someone he had known briefly as a very young police constable, changes everything. Tom Ede is now a Detective Superintendent, and is very keen to recruit Wexford as an adviser on a difficult case.

The bodies of two women and a man have been discovered in the old coal hole of an attractive house in St John's Wood. None carries identification. But the man's jacket pockets contain a string of pearls, a diamond and a sapphire necklace as well as other jewellery valued in the region of £40,000.

Wexford is intrigued and excited by the challenge--until this new investigative role brings him into serious physical danger.


A curious world we live in,’ said Franklin Merton, ‘where one can afford a house but not a picture of a house. That must tell us some profound truth. But what, I wonder?’
The picture he was talking about was Simon Alpheton’s Marc and Harriet in Orcadia Place, later bought by Tate...
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“Easily outshines most of the competition on either side of the Atlantic.”
Publisher’s Weekly

“An undoubted tour de force likely to offer enjoyment both to readers with long memories and to those approaching it as a stand-alone.”
Kirkus Reviews

Praise for Ruth Rendell:
"Ruth Rendell is, unequivocally, the most brilliant mystery novelist of our time. Her stories are a lesson in human nature as capable of the most exotic love as it is of the cruelest murder."
—Patricia Cornwell