The young Soviet state is in turmoil. Chekists walk along the streets. Hunger, cold and mud crawl away in the former aristocratic quarters of Moscow. The old order has been turned upside down, leaving room for political infighting and dark subterfuge.
This is the world Erast Fandorin - the celebrated detective - wakes up to after three years in a coma. His faithful assistant Masa might have nursed him successfully back to life, but there is no guarantee that the old Fandorin, with his razor-sharp intellect and superhuman strength, will ever be back.
Determined to leave behind Moscow - a city he doesn't recognise anymore - Fandorin embarks on one last great adventure. But who can he trust in a country torn apart by civil war?