Simla 1922. While the rest of India bakes in the hot season, up in the pine-scented coolness of the Himalayan hills the English have recreated a vision of home. Here are half-timbered houses, amateur theatricals, gymkhanas and a glittering vice-regal court for the socialites. The summer capital of the British Raj is fizzing with the energy of the jazz age. It is toward this country that detective Joe Sandilands is heading as the guest of the governor of Bengal. But when Joe's travelling companion, a Russian opera singer, is shot dead at his side on the road to Simla, he finds himself plunged into a murder investigation. As Joe begins to unravel the mystery which has its roots in the aftermath of the First World War, he discovers that behind the sparkling facade of Simla lies a trail of murder, vice and blackmail.