Forbidden in Victorian England, the grim and violent world of bare-knuckle fighting has gone underground. So when a headless body is found floating in the Thames, his hands 'pickled' for fighting, Sergeant Cribb knows he is facing a challenge.
Desperate for information, they select the young constable Henry Jago to infiltrate the gang, subjecting him to a rigorous programme of purging, pickling and training. Cribb is certain that the losing fighters are being killed, or worse, so getting Jago out just in time is crucial . . .
Peter Lovesey was born in Middlesex and studied at Hampton Grammar School and Reading University, where he met his wife Jax. He won a competition with his first crime fiction novel, Wobble to Death, and has never looked back, with his numerous books winning and being shortlisted for nearly all the prizes in the international crime writing world. He was Chairman of the Crime Writers' Association and has been presented with Lifetime Achievement awards both in the UK and the US.