Witing as Jack O'Malley, the author is a descendant of Irish immigrants who settled in Chicago. The story of the infamous Cronin murder provided an inspiration for his interest in the city's history and its long litany of political chicanery and injustice within a legal system that many see as biased towards those with influence and friends in high places.
British spies have infiltrated the United Brotherhood, to quash another Irish rebellion. When one of the spies turns up dead in a Chicago sewer, police detective Daniel Coughlin is swept up in a power struggle between warring factions of the Irish nationalists, a fight that could see him hanged for a murder he did not commit. If his political clout does not come through for him, he is a dead man.