It's the week before Christmas when a lone robber bursts into a busy Glasgow post office carrying an AK-47. An elderly man suddenly hands his young grandson to a stranger and wordlessly helps the gunman fill bags with cash, then carries them to the door. He opens the door and bows his head; the robber fires off the AK-47, tearing the grandfather in two.
DS Alex Morrow arrives on the scene and finds that the alarm system had been disabled before the robbery. Yet upon investigation, none of the employees can be linked to the gunman. And the grandfather-a life-long campaigner for social justice-is above reproach. As Morrow searches for the killer, she discovers a hidden, sinister political network. Soon it is chillingly clear: no corner of the city is safe, and her involvement will go deeper than she could ever have imagined.
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"Starred Review. While Mina keeps Alex's life outside of work mostly on the back burner, she ups the stakes by taking us into the dark, beating heart of modern Glasgow, where the real deals are struck and the spoils divided." - Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review. In this third Alex Morrow procedural (after The End of the Wasp Season ) Mina again plumbs the depths of the grungy Scottish metropolis, capturing political posturing, class differences, and familial dynamics with equal aplomb. At its center is the cranky, sympathetic Morrow, fast becoming one of the most intriguing cops in crime fiction. Fans of smart, character-driven procedurals will want to snatch this one up." - Library Journal
"Though the final surprise doesn't have the snap of logical inevitability, it's depressingly realistic." - Kirkus
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Denise Mina was born in Glasgow in 1966. Because of her father's job as an engineer, the family followed the north sea oil boom of the seventies around Europe, moving twenty one times in eighteen years from Paris to the Hague, London, Scotland and Bergen. She left school at sixteen and did a number of poorly paid jobs: working in a meat factory, as a bar maid, as a kitchen porter, and as a cook. Eventually she settled in auxiliary nursing for geriatric and terminal care patients.
At twenty one she passed exams, got into Law at Glasgow University and went on to research a PhD thesis at Strathclyde University on the ascription of mental illness to female offenders, teaching criminology and criminal law in the mean time. Misusing her grant, she stayed at home and wrote a novel, Garnethill ...
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