In his career as Manchester’s most indestructible private eye, Callum Innes has been run over, beaten within an inch of his life, shot in the ear, left for dead on a desert roadside, and halfway blown up by a car bomb. Now, mourning his brother and walking with a cane following a massive drug-related stroke, Cal is a wreck. Enter the Manchester crime lord Morris Tiernan to make his life even worse. Tiernan’s son Mo has gone missing, and Innes is the only person the distraught gangster trusts enough to conduct the search. There’s nobody Cal would like to find less, but you don’t say no to Uncle Morris. And it turns out that Innes is not the only one on the case --- the corrupt Detective Sergeant “Donkey” Donkin has an interest in the fate of the Tiernans, as well as a long-standing grudge against our intrepid shamus.
In this installment of the Cal Innes series, our hero gives up acting as a pawn in Manchester’s underworld disputes. He has his own burdens to bear and scores to settle --- with the Tiernan family, with Sergeant Donkin, and with the darkness in his own past.