Bicycling journalist Miller is exiled from his big-city paper to small-town Crossmaheart. There, he is to replace another reporter, Jamie Milburn, who has disappeared. Not that anyone's all that surprised, since Crossmaheart is a notoriously fatal place in which to ask questions. Miller aims to keep his head down, but as soon as he gets involved with Jamie's girlfriend Marie, that plan, and much else besides, begins to fall apart. Bateman is a master of storytelling, and CYCLE OF VIOLENCE is dark, disturbing and hugely enjoyable.