A detective story set thirty years from now in Edinburgh and Oxford. The hero is more cheerful than Rebus but with just as many idiosyncracies. The author's alternative history is thought-provoking - the UK now comprises city states divided by lawless areas. If you know the cities you can have fun identifying existing buildings put to uses unimagined by the original developers.
... It used to be St Andrew's House, a grandiose edifice with a pillared facade that housed the Secretary of State's office and then the Scottish Executive when Scotland still existed as a component of the United Kingdom - until the drugs wars did away with concept of stable nations ....
I looked to the left and saw Davie waving at me from a parked Land-Rover. 'Don't tell me they've got you on sentry duty, guardsman?' I said, heading towards him.
'Screw you pal,' he replied. 'Believe it or not, I'm in charge of security in this sector tonight.'
I glanced around at the swarms of auxiliaries in unusually pristine uniforms. 'You've got enough personnel to help you out.'
'Aye. Nothing but the best for our friends from the south.'