Sid Halley, a private investigator, has a new left hand, having had a transplant since his last appearance in Refusal. After receiving death threats, an ex-jockey trainer friend calls Sid to ask for his help, but Sid has his own problems to deal with; like recovering from surgery and saving his crumbling marriage. When his friend's stable yard is torched, horses killed, and the friend is found dead, Sid can only blame himself for not helping sooner. The police think it's suicide, but Sid is not convinced after his friend's terrified phone calls. Heavy with a guilty heart, Sid starts to investigate and soon finds himself embroiled in a conspiracy that cuts to the very heart of the integrity of British horse racing.