Reginald Hill paints a graphic picture of life as a coal miner. The community of Burrthorpe is one made up of miners and their families. They have been through a harrowing strike during which they made enemies of the local police. Apart from the usual characters that make up the Dalziel and Pascoe series, like Sergeant Wield and Ellie Pascoe, the main people in this book are these villagers. Years earlier a small girl disappeared and the police closed the case blaming a pedophile who had committed suicide and confessed to similar crimes.
Now a local journalist is digging into this case and raking up new evidence which may point to a local miner who was last seen with the child, and who is also dead following a fall down a pit shaft, which may have been suicide or murder but was classified as an accident. This man's son has returned to town and is a general troublemaker who hates authority. When his direct supervisor is murdered he is the first suspect. Hill fills his books with many twists and turns and we end up with a most unexpected ending.
This report prepared by Penny