The woods outside of Kingsmarkham were lovely, dark, and deep. And they were about to vanish forever when the new highway cut through them. While Chief Inspector Wexford privately despaired about the loss of his hiking grounds, local residents and outsiders were organizing a massive protest. Some of them were desperate enough to kidnap five hostages and threaten to kill them. One hostage was Wexford's wife, Dora. Now, combining high technology with his extraordinary detecting skills, Wexford and his team race to find the kidnappers' whereabouts. Because someone has crossed from political belief to fanaticism, and as the first body is found, good intentions may become Wexford's personal path to hell.