Damon Mee was last seen in a blurred security video on the dance floor of a Kirkaldy nightclub. It was a routine missing persons case and it wasn't even on his patch, but inspector John rebus said he'd look into it as a favour to the boy's father, a friend from his school days. In the deft hands of Ian Rankin, the ripples of the investigation widen rapidly. They lead to the club's greasy owner, to a slightly bent casion croupier, to a drop dead blonde whose name nobody seems to know, to a Hibs striker with a talent for goals and a weakness for gambling and finally to the shadowed men who call the shots in Edinburgh's underworld. When it's over, Rebus has repaid a debt and his boss has received an unexpected birthday present.