DS Logan McRae is back at Grampian Police HQ in the cold of Aberdeen after a year on the sick from being stabbed repeatedly in the stomach and it's not the best start. His first day back they find a dead young boy, with only more to come. Not only that, but the Media are baying for blood and they want Logan to co-operate; but they're not playing fair. It's a race against time before any more dead children show up.
This was a wonderful début novel. The only other crime thriller writer I have read is Ian Rankin (of course) and I wanted to address this, but didn't want to look to America for one like Cornwell. His writing style is similar to Rankin's in the sense that he couples humour and Human-repartee well with the grim forensic and policing.
Logan McRae is a very likeable character. There's nothing flat about the writing at all, but at times I felt the supporting cast were a bit dull and two-dimensional. For a début novel this is sterling stuff.