Scotland Yard Inspector Phillip Devlin's past comes back to haunt him, when a series of gruesome murders unsettles Victorian London, and most especially the Yard. Why does the killer single out Devlin for his game of cat and mouse? Is his killing spree something...
Interwoven into the suspense is a generous dose of humour, provided by the warm-hearted Devlin himself, as well as his motley group of assistants, amongst them a charmingly inept, infatuated constable, a pair of elegant graverobbers and a couple of free-thinking sapphites, all of whom have a colourful history and personality of their own.
Most chilling of all, perhaps, is the figure of John Whittaker, a man more deadly than Jack the Ripper and more cunning than a snake...a man who will sacrifice anything and anyone to kill the one man who has been his target all along: Devlin himself.