It is 1908, and international tensions are mounting as the world plunges towards war. When a brilliant American battleship gun designer dies in an apparent suicide, the man's grief-stricken daughter turns to the legendary Van Dorn Detective Agency to clear her father's name.
Van Dorn puts his chief investigator on the case, and Isaac Bell soon realizes that the clues point not to suicide, but to murder. When more suspicious deaths follow, it becomes clear that someone-an elusive spy-is orchestrating the destruction of America's brightest technological minds . . . and the murders all connect to a top-secret project called Hull 44.
As the intrigue deepens, Bell finds himself pitted against German, Japanese, and British spies, in a mission that encompasses dreadnaught battleships, Teddy Roosevelt's Great White Fleet, Chinatown, Hell's Kitchen, and the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Isaac Bell has certainly faced perilous situations before, but this time it is more than the future of his country that's at stake - it's the fate of the world.