Summer 1936. Mystery writer Josephine Tey joins her friends in the resort village of Portmeirion, Wales, to celebrate her fortieth birthday. Alfred Hitchcock and his wife, Alma Reville, are there to sign a deal to film Josephines novel, A Shilling for Candles.
But things get out of hand when one of Hollywoods leading actresses is brutally slashed to death in a cemetery near the village. The following day, as fear and suspicion take over in a setting where nothingand no oneis quite what it seems, Chief Inspector Archie Penrose becomes increasingly unsatisfied with the way the investigation is ultimately resolved. Several years later, another horrific murder, again linked to a Hitchcock movie, drives Penrose back to the scene of the original crime to uncover the shocking truth.