Nineteenth-century Istanbul comes alive in this thrilling tale about a stolen reliquary and an international conspiracy.
Constantinople, May 1453: as the Byzantine Empire crumbles, Isaak and his family are entrusted with a silver reliquary carved with the figure of a weeping angel and this inscription: 'Behold the Proof of Chora, Container of the Uncontainable'. It holds proof of God's existence.
Istanbul, 1887: the local magistrate, Kamil Pasha, is plagued by thefts of antiquities that appear for sale in Europe within days.
In addition, there has been a series of murders in which the bodies bear the mark of angel's wings.
Could this be connected to the rumours of an ancient cult, the mythical text link between Christianity and Islam?
Jenny White is a tenured professor of anthropology at Boston University, specializing in Turkish studies. She's written monographs on 20th-century politics and has been studying the Islamic party that recently won the elections in Turkey. Her book on that party became required reading in the State Department.