'a standout among her reliably entertaining procedurals' - Kirkus Starred Review
The tenth in the acclaimed Inspector Woodend series
There had never been a murder in Whitebridge like this one. What kind of man would decide to slash the throat of an inoffensive middle-aged widow who was already terminally ill? Why did he decide to place her lifeless body in the middle of a children's bonfire, and then set it alight? It is the most difficult and complex case in Woodend's career, but the two people he most relies on - DI Rutter and DS Paniatowski - are being torn apart by their personal problems.
As he struggles on, almost single-handedly, he comes to the reluctant conclusion that he is being forced to participate in the killer's game without even knowing the rules. Yet one thing, at least, is plain from the beginning. For the game to continue, there must be more deaths...