Chief Inspector Wexford had every reason to remember the Painter case. It might have seemed ordinary to some, but to Wexford it had been remarkable - it was the first murder he'd ever handled on his own. It certainly had been remarkable to Painter, because it hanged him. There had been no real mystery. Painter had done it all right. There had never been any real doubt in anyone's mind. Until now.
Over fifteen years later, the case is to be dug up again. For some, the past has been only shallowly buried; for others it hasn't been buried at all. But now there is someone who wants it retraced and re-examined, someone who wants history changed, the universe disturbed - and Wexford proved wrong . . .