In a world filled with so many puppets, strings tend to get tangled. In this follow-up to the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel When Gravity Fails, the Budayeen is still a very dangerous place, a high-tech Arabian ghetto where power and murder go hand in hand. Marid Audran used to be a low-level street hustler, relying on his wits and independence. Now he’s a cop planted in the force by Friedlander Bey, the powerful “godfather” of the Budayeen. Marid is supposed to simply be Bey’s envoy into the police, but as a series of grisly murders piles up—children, prostitutes, a fellow officer—he is drawn deeper and deeper into the city’s chaos. Would Marid give up all his newfound money and power to get out of this mess? Absolutely. If only he could. But answers are never that easy and choices are never completely one’s own in the Budayeen.