Emotions run high when Queen Elizabeth II attempts to heal the schism between Christians and Muslims by attending a London mosque for Friday prayers. David Bliss, newly returned to duty while he tries to find a publisher for his novel, has the task of protecting the royal couple, but is caught off guard when an attack comes from an unexpected quarter. Meanwhile, Bliss's aging friend Daphne Lovelace needs help. Her elderly neighbours have died and apparently left their house to the family from hell. While Bliss desperately tries to protect the queen, Daphne puts on her oldest coat and takes up residence in a seniors home as she tries to discover what really happened to her neighbours. Age apparently catches up with her, and in no time she appears as senile as the other inhabitants, but Trina Button in far-off Canada smells a rat and forces Bliss to take action. Is someone playing God? And what role does Jack the Ripper play?
James Hawkins was a police commander in the U.K. for 20 years and a Canadian private investigator for a further 8 years. He was also director of education at the Canadian Institute for Environmental Investigations. His debut novel, Missing: Presumed Dead (2001), was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel.