The path through the park runs from the centre of the city into the wilds of the countryside, winding through old woodland and past the ruined mills that used the river to power the trip hammers and grinding wheels of the steel industry. Now it is a weekend playground for children and walkers, but on weekdays it is silent and deserted.
What starts as a routine missing-child report, when six-year-old Lucy gets lost, ends in the murder of a young woman. Lucy tries to warn the people she cares about of the danger: she knows that there are monsters lurking in the rambling park, and she knows that they are getting closer.
Suzanne Milner, who lives next door to the little girl, is haunted by demons from the past. Through her research at a young offenders' centre, she finds herself reluctantly pulled into the web of fear surrounding the young woman's death. As a potential witness to the crime, she inadvertently directs police attention to one of the offenders with whom she works.
An apparently straightforward crime is turning into something darker, nastier and much more complex, and DI Steve McCarthy has to find his way through a maze of lies and evasions. There are many questions thrown into his path, including the most puzzling: why is Suzanne lying to him? But if he is to prevent an escalation in violence, he has to find some answers - fast.