After battling for justice in his first recorded case, Sergeant Caleb Cluff makes a swift return to duty in this book. The story opens one wet and windy night, with the discovery of a young woman's corpse, in a passageway in the Yorkshire town of Gunnarshaw.
The deceased is Jane Trundle, an attractive girl who worked as a shop assistant. She yearned for the good life, and Cluff finds more money in her handbag than she would have earned in wages.
Little that goes on in and around the mean streets of Gunnarshaw escapes him. He is scornful of detectives who rely solely on supposed facts: More than facts were in question here, the intangible, invisible passions of human beings.
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