An unidentified body points Wager to a radical religious sect.
A year ago, homicide detective Gabe Wager had a man killed. Though Wager feels no guilt at doing away with an evil man, his partner, Max Axton, is disgusted, and has hardly spoken to him for a year. Now Wager and Axton have to work together to solve a baffling crime that takes them to the border of Colorado — and the limits of human faith.
They find the body on Denver's outskirts, stripped of identifying marks and clutching a drawing of a sword-bearing angel. The picture is a clue: the calling card of a boastful killer. It leads Wager and Axton to the state's desolate fringe, where a radical Mormon group refuses to follow its church into the modern world, killing to protect their way of life.