For Our Sins by James Oswald

After a bit of a gap, it was great to finally get to read the thirteenth book in this excellent crime fiction series set in Edinburgh and featuring DI Tony McLean. As he had resigned at the end of the last book, to look after his partner Emma who is recovering from a stroke, Tony McLean does not at first feature quite so prominently as he usually does. DS Janey Harrison takes the lead in the investigation as a suitable replacement for DI McLean has not yet been found. She is well up to the task, though the responsibility weighs heavy.

When a body is found in the ruins of an old church building, unidentifiable due to the falling masonry, it is not immediately thought to be suspicious. This changes when two more bodies are found in similar circumstances, all linked to the criminal underworld. Unexplained flashbacks to something that happened back in the 1980s are scattered through the narrative, but do they have any relevance to this investigation?

For Our Sins has all the features we have come to expect from this series – strong and capable female officers (most of the senior officers here are female), a troublesome senior officer who is acting inappropriately, a hint of the supernatural, some familiar characters from previous books (always a pleasure to encounter Madame Rose), and most important, Mrs McCutcheon’s cat and the other one are always there to welcome Tony when he comes home.  

As readers of this series will already know, trouble and strange occurrences  follow Tony McLean and this case is no exception.  It was well worth the long wait, and we can only hope that he plans to come back for good in the next book. Only time will tell.