New York Times bestseller Deborah Crombie returns with a new novel featuring Scotland Yard detectives Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James as they race to solve the shocking murder of a young woman before panic spreads across London.
On a rainy November evening, trainee doctor Sasha Johnson hurries through the evening crowd in London's historic Russell Square. Out of the darkness, someone jostles her as they brush past. A moment later, Sasha stumbles, then collapses. When Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid and his sergeant, Doug Cullen, are called to the scene, they discover that she's been stabbed.
Kincaid immediately calls in his detective wife, Gemma James, who has recently been assigned to a task force on knife crimes which are on the rise. Along with her partner, detective sergeant Melody Talbot, Gemma aids the investigation. But Sasha Johnson doesn’t fit the profile of the task force’s typical knife crime victim. Single, successful, career-driven, she has no history of abusive relationships or any connection to gangs. Sasha had her secrets, though, and some of them lead the detectives uncomfortably close to home.
As the team unravels the victim's tangled connections, another murder raises the stakes. Kincaid, Gemma, and their colleagues must put even friendships on the line to find the killer stalking the dark streets of Bloomsbury.
Bestseller Crombie's skillfully plotted 19th police procedural featuring the husband and wife team of Det. Supt. Duncan Kincaid and Det. Insp. Gemma James of Scotland Yard (after 2019's A Bitter Feast) perfectly balances the investigative action with the characters' true to life personal problems. The duo and their colleagues are called to Russell Square, where Sasha Johnson, a trainee doctor at Thomas Coram Hospital, lies dead, stabbed in the chest. The victim's assailant acted swiftly and efficiently, fading away into the crowd before even she realized she'd been mortally stabbed. Why would anyone want to murder the respected and much loved doctor? The stakes rise after the nurse in charge of Sasha's ward at the hospital is fatally stabbed in Soho Square. Once again, there are no witnesses. What's the connection between the two murders? Crombie provides plausible suspects and motives amid entertaining interplay, including some friction, among the members of the squad. This entry can be read as a standalone, but it will give special pleasure to fans who have grown fond of the couple over the years. Agent: Nancy Yost, Nancy Yost Literary.