Having followed the Bob Skinner series for some time, I did not realize at first that this book was a reprint of an earlier copyright (1998 according to the frontispiece). Good yarn, concisely told (unlike, say, Elizabeth George although she is one of my favorites). What puzzles me?
Well first and foremost, I'm having trouble with the chronology. In this book he's gotten back together with his second wife, and his first daughter is a practicing solicitor (British-speak for lawyer), but by the recent chronology seems to be over ten years too early.
The other thing that puzzles me: was he a good writer "out of the box" so to speak, or has he in fact failed to materially improve his craft? i.e. surprisingly little difference in the writing quality compared with his latest books. Anyway, a good yarn with a very plausible thought intricate plot, but the simplicity of his characters keeps him from being in the top drawer (I'll still continue to read him). Like Ian Rankin, I think an at least passing familiarity with Edinburgh enormously improves one's interest in his books (my son attended well to be fair to him graduated from Edinburgh University so I came to know the town reasonably well).
A minor beef, of the type that I am sure mystery writers are thoroughly sick of. BTW BOT a plot spoiler here. A key item in one scene is that a shot from a high-powered sporting rifle at only a moderate distance is not heard by anybody because they are all watching a soccer match. Obviously Mr. Jardine has never personally heard such a rifle being fired; all those who HAVE had that experience (myself, numerous times both as a firee and witness) will know that this is totally impossible. Not only is it a distinctive sound, but it is FAR louder than the noise of any sports event.