It is Christmas Day in York. A woman is found dead in her bed. A suicide note is found on her chest. It reads "I am so sorry Martin". Hours later, the police are called to a house a few miles away. A mother and her daughter have been brutally attacked; the mother is dead and the daughter is barely alive. The father is found shaking uncontrollably in the corner of the room. He is covered in blood but he is unharmed. His name is Martin Willow
"Could have used Some Further Editing"
A man is killing people in York. Initially the murders appear to be the random acts of a maniac. Detective Jason Smith is put in charge of the investigation. It soon becomes clear that the murders are all connected to him in one way or another. All of the killings correspond to events in Smith's life and the murderer leaves dates at the crime scene which tie up to important dates in Smith's history. When one of the dates is a time before Smith was even born, he realizes he must look deep into the past.
Phobia is a series of five DS Jason Smith cases he worked on before we met him in the first book, Smith. We get insights into what molded him into the detective sergeant we first get a glimpse of in Smith. Smith quickly realizes that police work isn't always cut and dry. Justice is not always black and white; there are many shades of gray in between.
Detective Sergeant Jason Smith is days away from the end of his sick leave after a case that almost cost him his life when he gets a call from an old friend. His friend has been arrested for the murder of a student. He wants Smith to investigate the murder and prove his innocence. Smith is persuaded return to work. The student was killed with a bread knife. Ladybirds were scattered on his dead body.