Fans of Harry Devlin will be happy to see that the Liverpool lawyer with an unquenchable hunger for justice is at the top of his form. The wife of one of Harry’s richest clients, Jack Stirrup, has disappeared. Despite his misgivings, Harry agrees to look into the case, but the waters are soon muddied by the disappearance of Stirrup’s daughter. Is Stirrup the victim of some nasty plot, or is he a double murderer? And what connection, if any, does a vicious rapist known only as “The Beast” have with the disappearances? As usual, Edwards nails the mixture of ambition and weariness that is central to Harry’s character; unlike many legal-thriller protagonists, Harry is not a top-of-his-field attorney but rather a partner in a rather undistinguished little practice. An excellent entry in this increasingly popular series.
This review originally appeared in Booklist, January 2006.