Winter 1944: northern Italy is a battlefield, with Communist partisans locked in vicious conflict with the forces of Mussolini's fascist Republic of Salo. Brookes, a wounded fugitive, finds shelter in an isolated and decaying castle in the mountains, home to a reclusive nobleman and his family. But as he recovers his strength, he discovers that the inhabitants of the castle are not quite what they seem; he also realizes that they have no intention of letting him leave. Snowed in through the long winter, Brookes, the Barone, and his family are drawn into a complex game of power and seduction. And as the violent demands of the warring world outside the castle become ever more insistent, they face a final choice: a decision that will determine the living from the dead. Knight of Swords is a gripping tale of identity and illusion, of games played for the highest stakes amid the devastation of war. At the heart of its enthralling mystery lies a timeless story: one of loyalty and betrayal, humanity and conflict, and the redemptive power of love.