It's a rare occurrence when Chief Inspector of Detectives Peter McGarr leaves the shores of his beloved Ireland -- but this time he has little choice. The blood of two prominent British subjects -- both former S.I.S. chiefs, both brutally murdered -- is staining Irish soil. And Sir Colin Cummings, the current head of Britain's elite secret service -- and potential third victim -- en route to Italy, with McGarr coming along for the man's protection. A macabre conspiracy of murder and revenge is spreading its tentacles across several nations, and McGarr's time spent amidst the charm and rustic beauty of Siena promises to be anything but restful. Because there are many hidden players in this most deadly game -- from ex-spies to Communist rabble rousers to wealthy Italian industrialists. And a single misstep could place one dedicated and inquisitive Chief Inspector of the Garda Soichana directly in the line of killing fire.