15-year-old Billy Davies is found dead in his father's shed. A pair of gardening shears thrust brutally into his chest. DI Hillary Greene tries to get to the bottom of this baffling crime. How had Billy come into contact with such a vicious killer? Who wanted him dead and why? The investigation reveals that the teenager was not such an innocent young man. Meanwhile, Hillary's career seems to have stalled. She's been passed over for promotion, and her reliable constable Tommy Lynch is to be transferred out. But Hillary won't let distractions get in the way of solving crimes. To catch this killer, Hillary will need to dig deep into the dark secrets of a small community. Set at prestigous, ancient Oxford University, drawing on the author's local knowledge of the university's history and the area, and expert research into police procedure. At the heart of the series is Hillary Greene, a hard-working detective who lives on a houseboat, has a reputation for getting the job done right. Her DCI, Philip 'Mellow' Mallow, has her back, even as she battles an ongoing internal investigation.