12 October 2022

Natural Causes


By James Oswald


When the mutilated body of a young girl is discovered in a sealed room of an old property currently being renovated, Detective Inspector Tony McLean is called in to investigate. It would appear to have been a ritual killing which took place over 60 years ago. The girl's organs have been sadistically removed and placed into glass jars. Although those responsible are most likely long dead, McLean nonetheless feels compelled to identify them.

What a fantastic first book in the series and why didn't I read it sooner?! DI McLean's investigation is a wonderfully tangled, intricate web dating back more than 60 years with repercussions being felt in the present day. 

It's a fast-paced read with fully developed, believable characters. Set in Edinburgh with a touch of the supernatural, I really enjoyed the plot. If this first book is anything to go by, I'm in for a treat with another eleven currently available.


  • Paperback: 458 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin
  • Publication Date: 9th May 2013
  • Author: James Oswald
  • Genre: Crime


A young girl's mutilated body is discovered in a sealed room. Her remains are carefully arranged, in what seems to have been a cruel and macabre ritual, which appears to have taken place over 60 years ago.

For newly appointed Edinburgh Detective Inspector Tony McLean this baffling cold case ought to be a low priority - but he is haunted by the young victim and her grisly death.

Meanwhile, the city is horrified by a series of bloody killings. Deaths for which there appears to be neither rhyme nor reason, and which leave Edinburgh's police at a loss.

McLean is convinced that these deaths are somehow connected to the terrible ceremonial killing of the girl, all those years ago. It is an irrational, almost supernatural theory.
And one which will lead McLean closer to the heart of a terrifying and ancient evil . . .

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