M is for Murphy, Leon. Father of Jessica. Kavanagh feels he can eke out some sort of justification for most things Maurice has asked him to do. One night in March 1999 will change that perception forever.

N is for No Witnesses. No exceptions. The instructions are clear and Kavanagh understands them perfectly. But understanding is one thing. Living with the consequences is another.

Nuclear deterrent. It works as long as both people with a finger on the button are capable of acting rationally and considering the broader implications. But what if one of them is replaced?

O is for Obidos. A medieval walled town with a picturesque lagoon nearby, only a short drive from Praia D’El Rey. Setting for a crucial scene in which Kavanagh begins to realise what he’s up against.

Oath of the Legions (sic). Taken by nine-year-old Jonny to gain membership to The Spartacus Gang. His first indication that swearing allegiance and being included are not necessarily the same thing.

P is for Praia D’El Rey, the setting for the final third of the novel. It’s a resort built around an attractive golf course but we’ve been there twice and I’ve never been remotely tempted to go for 18 holes.

The beach, the climate, the surrounding countryside and the sea especially are such tempting alternatives. Be warned though . . . the water is every bit as bracing and wild as the book suggests.

Q is for Quai Inn, Wareham. Setting for a crucial first meeting between Kavanagh and Jimmy. It’s a lovely pub restaurant which we visited while I was doing my research and I can definitely recommend the food and the friendliness of the staff.

 R is for Redemption. All that Kavanagh wants now. He is a man on a mission.