This is book one of the DS Cross series. It is a police procedural. Cross reminds me of Professor T, a Belgian TV series that we watch on PBS. Both the professor and DS Cross are “odd”. Cross is an Asperger person who lives by logic and rules. He can now recognize emotions in people he knows, but fails to detect them in people new to him. He has OCD.
But Cross also has the best arrest rate in the Bristol police force, so he is tolerated.
The dead body appears to be a bum, but Cross soon realizes he is much more. He is the dentist of the title whose wife was murdered years before. Working on the assumption that the two murders are connected, Cross has to sort his way through piles of evidence surrounding a collection of suspects.
It is a good story written by a successful writer and producer of TV and movies. My only complaint is that every few pages we are told yet again that Cross does not think the way other people do. I wish Mr. Sullivan could have assumed we would eventually remember his oddness.