As the Young Pretender and his Jacobite army approach, Coroner Titus Cragg must solve a brutal murder — and prevent himself being executed for the crime.
November, 1745. Preston, Lancashire. Rumours abound that Charles Edward Stuart, the Young Pretender, has landed in Scotland, intent on marching south to claim the English throne. Meanwhile Coroner Titus Cragg must investigate a headless body discovered in an icy pond. There is evidence to suggest a connection with the approaching rebel army — unless someone is deliberately using the Highlanders’ invasion as a cover for murder.
As simmering tensions, conflicting loyalties and open hostilities engulf the town, Cragg finds himself arrested for murder. In order to clear his name and escape execution by firing squad, Titus must team up with his old friend, Dr Luke Fidelis, to expose the real killer.