Heavy snow, and it's still only November. DI McLusky has settled into his new job in Bristol but the severe weather shows an unfamiliar side to the city. After the conviction of a drug baron earlier in the year a new kingpin secures the hub of drug crime in Bristol. But how secure does he feel? A series of seemingly unconnected murders, accidents and dying drug users, investigated by McLusky and his team, slowly reveal the web of violence that spreads across the city. Narrow strips of a cut-up photograph arriving piecemeal at the Bristol Herald's office may hold vital clues, but will the completed puzzle reach McLusky in time to prevent more deaths?
The private lives of both McLusky and his rival, DI Kat Fairfield, take unexpected turns too, making the atmosphere at Albany Road station, already considerably cooled by the failed heating, icier still.