The villagers of Chipping Cleghorn are summoned by a newspaper notice to the house of Letitia Blacklock, anticipating an evening of murder games. But things become all too real when an intruder is shot dead.
No one seems surprised when Colonel Lucius Protheroe, the most disliked person in St. Mary Mead, is found murdered in the local vicarage. Red herrings abound, especially when his widow and her lover both confess to the murder.
Miss Marple and her nephew, novelist Raymond West, embark on a coach tour of historic English houses with an eclectic group of characters at the behest of a late friend who had knowledge of an unsolved murder.
A wealthy woman holds a party at her Devon estate for family and friends, including old schoolmate Miss Marple. When a solicitor and the hostess herself are both murdered, Miss Marple tries to find a clever killer with a devious plan.