It was midday on December 21st in the city of Tromsø when the boy was last seen: a tall, blond boy swathed in anorak and scarf against the Arctic noon. After that he wasn’t seen again, not until three months later, when Professor Mackenzie’s dog started sniffing around in the snow and uncovered a human ear, attached to a naked corpse. Nobody knew who he was, or where he had come from. And after three months it was almost impossible to track down the identity of the corpse. But Inspector Fagermo refused to give up, and as he probed deeper into the Arctic city he began to discover a dangerous conspiracy of blackmail, espionage, and cold-blooded murder.
Robert Barnard (1936-2013) was awarded the Malice Domestic Award for Lifetime Achievement and the Nero Wolfe Award, as well as the Agatha and Macavity awards. An eight-time Edgar nominee, he was a member of Britain's distinguished Detection Club, and, in May 2003, he received the Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for lifetime achievement in mystery writing. His most recent novel, Charitable Body, was published by Scribner in 2012.