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In the northwest frontier 1910, the screams of a wounded British officer abandoned at the bottom of a dark ravine are heard by a young Scottish subaltern. Ignoring the command to retreat to base the Highlander sets out alone, with dagger in hand, to rescue his fellow officer from the Pathan tribesman who is slowly torturing him to death. But the bloody outcome of this rescue attempt is not what anybody could have predicted.
Over a dozen years later the backwash of this tragedy threatens to engulf Joe Sandilands. On a welcome break from his policing duties, Joe is spending a fortnight with his old army friend, James Lindsay, commander of the British army’s front line fort at Gor Khatri on the Afghan border. However, the fragile peace is soon broken resulting in the death of a Pathan prince and the taking of hostages, and Joe and his companion are given seven days in which to identify, arrest and execute the killer before…[more]
India, 1922: Joe Sandilands, Scotland Yard detective, is staying with Governor Sir George Jardine in Simla when there is some unexpected news. Sir George sends Joe off to the Princely State of Ranipur in the company of Edgar Troop, an experienced hunter, at the request of the Maharajah, an old ally of the British. A man-eating tiger is terrorizing the northern villages, and the two men are invited to join a hunting party in the forest. But the quality of the weaponry with which Sir George supplies him raises Joe’s suspicions. The rifle will be perfect for the tiger, but why has he also been issued with the small Browning M pistol, designed for use on human targets?
The Maharajah is dying and the succession is unclear. His first son has recently been killed in a panther-related incident. Then a second son dies dramatically before Joe’s eyes. The third and last remaining son—the favorite successor in the eyes…[more]