This is my first book by this author - the writer of Silent Witness and New Tricks.  First para (avoiding the prologue):


"The sky above the rooftops was a misty grey-blue, a wash of unbroken colour from one end of the street to the other.  Hidden behind the half-cloud, the sun was just a brighter patch in an already bright sky.  No shadows darkened the pavement or the road.  Something about the diffuse light made the cars, houses and lamp posts seem as if they had been cut out and placed onto a perfect picture of the street, barely connected to reality, able to be repositioned at will."

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I've looked into the eyes of women who have banged nine-inch nails into the skulls of their victims with hammers ... we evaluate them, trying to determine whether they have actually changed, or whether there's still a core of evil within them...

Before his diagnosis, DCI Mark Lapslie thought everyone was like him. Now he knows he suffers from synaethesthesia - a rare neurological condition that has cross-wired his senses. The sickening clamour of sounds he can taste has smothered his marriage and stifled his career. 

At the scene of a fatal traffic accident, Lapslie's interest isn't in the recently deceased driver, rather the desiccated corpse found lying next to him. Something about the body stirs a fleeting recollection at the back of Lapslie's mind... he can't quite put his finger on it, but he can almost taste it... 

Memories haunt Violet Chambers. Taking tea with her friend Daisy, she knows it's time to move on. As Daisy falls to the floor, eyes streaming, face burning, Violet calmly waits. Black hellebore is remarkably potent. It won't be long now. 

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Submitted by Karen on Sat, 02/02/2008 - 07:16 pm