Mo Hayder writes very well about the nastier aspects of life. This is a second book featuring DI Jack Caffery and the area of south London between Brixton and Dulwich. His life is blighted by the loss of his brother when both were children and his ongoing feud with a local paedophile who was involved. He has a girlfriend who was seriously hurt in the first book and the
relationship between them forms part of the novel with her wanting him to get over his brother and he wanting her to adjust
to the immediate past. The thrust of the book is the discovery of a couple near death with a missing son, the elaboration of what happened to them and the involvement of an extensive paedophile ring which includes the local one. As the tale moves to a sort of conclusion, the reader learns of Caffery's brother's fate though Caffery himself does not. Despite the unsavoury nature of events, I was not put off as the standard of writing is very good. The plotline was possibly a little confusing but so is real life though one does tend to expect a more straighforward exposition in most novels. I must find the first book though some of the limited references did strike a chord.