Bodies pile up as a Scottish PI helps a local farmer learn why his long-estranged brother killed himself.
Daniel Robertson was only 16 when he left St. Michaels, a small village outside Dundee, after quarreling with his father. More than two decades later, his brother James finds his body hanging from a tree on the family’s farm. To fill in the gaps in Daniel’s life, James turns to an ex-cop named McNee, who’s been working as a private eye since the car crash that claimed the life of his fiancée Elaine Barrow left him unfit for police service. Still grappling with his loss and the anger of Elaine’s family, McNee traces Daniel to London’s East End, where he worked for gangster Gordon Egg. Soon Gordon’s wife Kat is up in Scotland, asking McNee about Daniel, and just that quick she’s found dead in a flat owned by local thug David Burns. Egg’s yeggs Ayer and Liman shoot up McNee’s office, sending his assistant to intensive care with a stomach wound, but McNee just can’t bring himself to level with local DI Lindsay, who showed him scant sympathy after Elaine’s death. It’s not until foul-mouthed thugs go after Burns, killing his two bodyguards and beating him within an inch of his life, that McNee finally finds an ally he can trust in his fight against the London wide boys.
Like McNee’s car, McLean’s debut hurtles inexorably toward a terrifying cataclysm.