It's Christmas time, 1969, in Chicago. After a night out, Smokey Dalton, Kris Nelscott's enigmatic African-American P.I., and his girlfriend find a young woman bleeding to death in his neighbor's apartment. Upon arriving with her at the hospital, they discover that her injuries are due to a botched illegal abortion.
This act of charity blooms into a more complicated situation when Smokey learns that the woman became pregnant after being raped. The woman survives, but the fallout is deadly: Her ex-husband vows revenge at any cost. And in a city torn apart by racial strife, gang wars, and a burgeoning drug problem, Smokey believes that cost could be too high.
Kris Nelscott, one of the most nuanced, intelligent writers of crime fiction working today, has authored another heart-stopping, complicated novel of a country ripped apart at the seams and a lone man doing all he can to put things right.