Historical Mystery. Paris, 1796. Aristide Ravel, freelance undercover police agent and investigator, is confronted with a double murder in a fashionable apartment. The victims are the daughter of a wealthy and influential family, and the man who was blackmailing her. From the gritty back alleys of Paris to its glittering salons and cafés, through the heart of feverish, decadent postrevolutionary France, Ravel’s investigation leads him into a puzzle involving hidden secrets, crimes of passion, and long-nurtured hatreds.