â€śOne of my favorite authors, Val McDermid is an important writerâ€”witty, never sentimental, taking us through mean streets with the dexterity of a Chandler.â€ťâ€”Sara Paretskyâ€śThere is no one in contemporary crime fiction who has managed to combine the visceral and the humane as well as Val McDermid. . . . Sheâ€™s the best weâ€™ve got.â€ťâ€”The New York Times Book Reviewâ€śVal McDermid is one of the bright lights of the mystery field.â€ťâ€”The Washington Postâ€śMcDermidâ€™s a skillful writerâ€”comparisons with such American novelists as Sara Paretsky and Sue Grafton are appropriate. Clever, absorbing and lots of fun.â€ťâ€”Chicago TribuneLindsay Gordonâ€”investigative journalist, tenacious sleuth and unashamed lesbianâ€”is facing a midlife crisis. Back in her native Scotland after a long absence, she has no job, no friends and no desire to even think about her girlfriendâ€™s worrying preoccupations. A chance encounter with freelance reporter Rory McLaren offers her an irresistible invitation to open a new chapter in her life. From there it is just a short step to political corruption and other juicy storiesâ€”all welcome distractions from Lindsayâ€™s problems at home. But when a local car dealerâ€™s stepson is kidnapped, Lindsay and Rory trade journalism for detection. The trail leads them to St. Petersburg and a dangerous snatch-back operation that will test Lindsay to her absolute limits in every area of her life.Val McDermid grew up in a Scottish mining community and read English at Oxford. After 16 years in journalism, she became a full-time writer in 1991. An international bestseller, sheâ€™s published over 20 books. Her many awards include the Gold Dagger, the Los Angeles Times Book Award and the Anthony. Val McDermid lives in the north of England.