Brighton, 1950s, mid-winter. Two missing children are found buried under snow in this chilling new case for DI Stephens and Max Mephisto. Max's star turn in Aladdin has been overshadowed by the murder of two local children.
With fairy tales in the air, it's not long before the press have found a nickname for the case: 'Hansel and Gretel'. 'An excellent whodunnit, matched by the terrific down-at-heel atmosphere of postwar Brighton' - The TimesDI Edgar Stephens has plenty of leads to investigate.
The missing girl, Annie, used to write plays and perform them with her friends.
Does the clue lie in Annie's unfinished - and rather disturbing - last script? Or might it lie with the eccentric actor types who have assembled for the pantomime?Once again Edgar enlists Max's help in penetrating the shadowy theatrical world that seems to hold the key.
But is this all just classic misdirection?