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Perfect Sins

US Publisher: St Martin's Press

Four years ago, Gabriel Ash was working with the British government investigating hijackings in Somalia. But when his wife and sons disappeared, presumably taken—and probably killed—by pirates, his life fell apart. He has sudden reason to hope when a senior policeman suggests that his sons might still be alive—until that policeman is murdered. Still, there seems to be some link to a local operation, and Ash, no longer a government agent, is determined to find it.

Meanwhile, his friend Hazel Best has been having a tough time of her own. A police constable whose last case ended with her shooting someone dead, she is just beginning to regain her balance. Hazel and Ash are both beginning to take more of an interest in the outside world, when a neighboring archaeologist decides to dig up a curious mound of earth near the ice house on his land. It might be a burial mound, he thinks. It is, but not the ancient one he expects; it holds the bones of a little boy from perhaps thirty years ago, carefully laid to rest with twentieth-century toys. As Hazel is slowly drawn back into police work, Ash finds himself under threat from someone who must think his investigation into his family’s disappearance is finally getting somewhere…

Jo Bannister’s police procedurals have been widely praised not only for outstanding plotting and suspense, but also for their brilliant and compelling characterization.


“Readers will look forward to seeing more of Bannister’s finely drawn leads—fragile but determined Ash and good-hearted, impetuous Best—especially after the shocking cliffhanger ending.” —Publishers Weekly

“As one old crime comes to a slow and sad resolution, another emerges with an urgency that will have readersdemanding the next book in the series. Ash is so genuine in his neediness that his friendship with Hazel never feels particularly one-sided. Two compelling story lines for two compelling characters.” —Booklist