A beautifully written thriller from the acclaimed Cold War series writer: 'a welcome addition to the wartime ground mapped out by Philip Kerr and Alan Furst' Guardian Prague, 1968: a young student is captured as he tries to flee the country in the wake of Russia's suppression of the Prague Spring. Seven years later, a People's Militia homicide investigator boards a plane for Istanbul. When it is hijacked by Armenian terrorists, the Turkish authorities try to establish contact -- but the plane explodes in mid-air. No negotiation, no explanation. Why? Two investigators are assigned to the case: Gavra Noukas, a homicide detective who lives a dangerous double-life, and Brano Sev, an experienced secret policeman loyal to the state. Both believe their superiors are keeping them in the dark but neither can work out why. As they start unravelling the elaborate mystery, though, a trail emerges -- one leading back to a seven-year-old murder, a seemingly insignificant killing with terrifying consequences.