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Olen Steinhauer's acclaimed literary crime series set in a fictional country in Eastern Europe began in the heady post--World War II era and has taken readers from the first noise of revolution through to the chaos of the 1960s and '70s.

The year is 1975, and one of the People's Militia homicide investigators is on a plane out of the capital, bound for Istanbul. The plane is hijacked by Armenian terrorists, but before the Turkish authorities can fulfill their demands, the plane explodes in midair.

Two investigators---Gavra Noukas, a secret policeman, and Katja Drdova, a homicide detective---are assigned to the case. Both believe that Brano Sev, their enigmatic superior and himself a career secret policeman, is keeping them in the dark both about the details of the case and all its players and about the true motives of their investigation, but they can't figure out why. That is, until they learn that everything is connected to a seven-year-old murder, a seemingly insignificant murder that has had far-reaching consequences.

The politics and history for which Olen Steinhauer's novels have been most praised turn intimate and highly compelling in this ambitious new novel.

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