This is not only a well-done mystery but it is also a fine indictment of a certain kind of chicanery, one that drives me particularly crazy.
I didn’t warm to this at first because Brookmyre does an excellent job of suggesting that the reader is going to learn how real psychic phenomena truly is. In the first chapters, I was actually getting frustrated, which just goes to show you the excellent job he does.
But the result of the resolution of the mystery is a damning indictment of psychics and mediums which is both engaging and funny. It’s full of well-executed plot twists and only one or two groaning moments – including an absolutely terrible line in the last chapter.
And, in addition to this, Brookmyre ties his subject in with an attack on Neo-Conservatism, a fascinating link which I had not perceived myself, but one which I want to investigate further – the same credulity that allows for mystics allows for Neo-Conservative and other nonsense ideologies.
Anyway, just great stuff.