Who is behind a rash of murderous mailshots? A nasty outbreak of malice has hit the town of Lochdubh in the form of poison pen letters. Then the local postmistress is found hanging in her room with a vicious note lying beneath her dangling feet - his superiors call it suicide, but PC Hamish Macbeth pronounces it murder. However, Hamishs attention is distracted by Jenny Ogilvie, a friend of his ex-fiancee, who arrives in Lochdubh intent on seducing him. To cap it all hes then ambushed by local reporter Elspeth Grant, whos keen to scoop the story - and Hamish - for herself.