A Novel of the Zulu Wars.
Ensign Sebastian Early is a young soldier sent to South Africa with his regiment, the 24th Foot. The death of his friend results in Seb taking over the job of Provost-Marshal, the policeman for Lieutenant-General Lord Chelmsford's army. Seb has taken the post out of regard for his dead friend, but would really prefer to be soldiering with his regiment on the front line. Instead he finds himself investigating a bizarre murder of a captain, even though his C.O. believes the man committed suicide, and the theft of a major's gold watch. In the course of his investigations he gets caught up in the illegal killing of Zulu warriors and has to do some anonymous fighting of his own.