Charlie Rutland specialized in scandal hunting. As a journalist at a smart magazine, his job was to search out anything that could be turned into a good smear story. Then, while carrying out some 'investigations' in Yorkshire, his career came to an abrupt and violent end.
Inspector Crow, skeletal as ever, arrives from Scotland Yard to find a formidable task awaiting him. He uncovers some strange facts connected with Rutland's death - a Nazi war criminal, an old vagrant of the dales, and, in a dead man's diary, the number of a stolen car belonging to an attractive and wealthy widow.