In his novel, David Pirie pairs Bell and Doyle as Doyle would later pair Holmes and Watson, as pioneers in criminal investigation, looking into the seamy underside of the proper Victorian world. Doyle is puzzled by the ocular symptoms of a woman in his medical practice. Bell senses that there is something criminal afoot, and...the chase is joined.
"Brilliant debut mystery....The author masterfully manufactures suspense, and several passages are truly spine-chilling....An unsettling solution makes a perfectly appropriate ending for this hard-to-put-down and richly atmospheric thriller." (Publishers Weekly)