Third book in a series of English mysteries set just after the first world war. Many mysteries have a troubled cop, detective, etc... at their heart but in this case the Scotland Yard detective is literally haunted... or mad. Ian Rutledge is a talented detective but he came back from the war with a heavy conscience and the spirit of a scottish soldier that he had shot for disobeying orders squatting in the back of his mind. Whether this is a real supernatural twinge or Rutledge is suffering from severe PTSD is kept purposefully vague.
The mystery plots in these books are usually interesting and engaging and this is no exception. The historical setting is well done and the atmosphere is of an England bereft and a little lost and seems just as it should. It adds a sharper edge to many of the mysteries. This one in particular is littered with men shattered by the war and the reader is meant to look on all of them with suspicion and sympathy.
Unfortunately I do feel that this book was a little sloppier than the previous ones I'd read. Story continuity sometimes seems askew and some of the characters created are too shallow and didn't hit the mark I think the author wanted hit. Because of this lack of care, I didn't relish this one as the good mystery read I was looking for.