Hana Westerman is a tenacious Ma¯ori detective juggling single motherhood and the pressures of her career in Auckland CID. When she’s led to a crime scene by a mysterious video, she discovers a man hanging in a secret room. Delving into the investigation she uncovers a chilling connection between a series of apparently unrelated murders and an historic crime: 160 years ago, during the brutal bloody colonisation of New Zealand, a troop of colonial soldiers unjustly executed a Ma¯ori Chief.
A KILLER IN SEARCH OF RETRIBUTION
Hana discovers that the murders are utu (ritualistic vengeance) for the crime committed eight generations ago. There were six soldiers in the British troop. Descendants of two of the soldiers have been killed, so there are four more murders to go. Hana soon realises that she is hunting New Zealand's first serial killer and she must stop him before he completes his mission.
A CLASH BETWEEN CULTURE AND DUTY
But the pursuit becomes frighteningly personal. As a new cop two decades before, Hana was part of a police force sent to forcibly end a land rights occupation on the same ancestral mountain the Chief was killed on 160 years ago. She was a Maori cop sent to remove peaceful Maori land protestors and the police action turned vicious and ugly. Worse still, a geneaological link is found between one of the six soldiers and Hana's ex-husband, the father of her child.
THE PAST NEVER TRULY STAYS BURIED
As the killings continue, it seems the killer's agenda of revenge may include Hana – and her family . . .
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