Mystery/police procedural. Typical Inspector Carol Ashton fare. Solid enough mystery, and, as usual with McNab, proficient, though uninspired writing. At this point in the series, I'm really ambivalent about Ashton; I don't actively dislike her, but she's not particularly likable, either. As for her occasional lover Madeline Shipley, a self-centered and largely fake personality, I admit to taking an active dislike. Since Ashton's domestic partner, Sybil, is MIA for this particular entry in the series, Mark Bourke, Carol's police partner, and her aunt are the only characters providing any life to this otherwise pedestrian story.