A young boy is found dead in a rubbish heap, suffocated and with one finger cut off. Another boy is missing. A psychopath is stabbing babies as they lie sleeping in their cots. A fifteen-year-old has been abducted, then found naked by the roadside. The corpse of a petty criminal is discovered, with the tops of three fingers chopped off. The small children of a carpet fitter are murdered; his wife's body is found on the railway line. A supermarket MD is sent a ransom demand for the missing boy, accompanied by one of the child's fingers...Jack Frost, scruffy and insubordinate, foul-mouthed and fearless, staggers from crisis to crisis, his bumbling modus operandi disguising his extraordinary powers of detection.