A Jack of Spades and his fragrant accomplice; an eager young deputy and a fugitive countess; a game of cat and mouse and a series of savage murders: the dashing, inimitable Erast Fandorin finds himself juggling them all . . . He faces two very different adversaries. The first is a wickedly mischievous swindler and master of disguise. The other is a brutal serial killer - nicknamed The Decorator - who may have more in common with London's Jack the Ripper than just a taste for women of easy virtue. With twists and turns around every corner, Fandorin's powers of detection are tested to the limit.