The body of a teenage girl is discovered in a cistem deep below the city of Istanbul. For the Turkish police force's most idiosyncratic and talented officer, Cetin Ikmen, this is a difficult case. The girl was his daughter's friend and her attire, that of a nineteenth-century Ottoman, offers no easy explanation. With his promise of justice to the dead girl's mother still fresh on his lips, Ikmen is taken off the case. He's reassigned to the kidnapping of an ageing movie star's wife. The star is hiding something and so, Ikmen fears, are his superiors. A powerful secret exists in the labyrinthine city, one which those on either side of the law will do anything to prevent escaping. But for Ikmen, there's no choice, only the truth.