Cloughton Repertory Theatre Company is busy rehearsing a new play when a terrible and bizarre event occurs. One of the cast is shot dead while awaiting his cue to go on stage. Who would want to murder a small-town actor in an amateur dramatics company? Enter DCI Benny Mitchell and his team. Forensics soon discover that the fatal bullet came from the same gun which was used to injure a policeman during a recent terrorist attack in London.
The reception that follows the funeral of Edgar Smith is not a sober affair in any sense of the word, thanks to the antics of his daughter, Lorraine. When Lorraine's dead body is found in her sister's spare room later on in the day, the police are called.
While police forces are investigating a series of fires, an office complex is burned down and two bodies are discovered in the ruins. DCI Benny Mitchell and his team soon learn that the fire was started deliberately, but as other evidence begins to complicate the case, they begin to doubt that this was the work of the serial arsonist. Could the fire be a copycat arson attack designed to mask the real crime? Or could they be dealing with an incident involving family dishonour and revenge? It's up to Mitchell and his team to find out.