His mission was to bring home the wayward fiancé of a British politician who just might be a French spy. But for Lazarus Longman – former explorer and secret agent for the British Empire – things are never that simple. The politician in question was once his friend but is now his bitter rival. The fiancé is France’s leading Egyptologist, a woman whose dealings with a renegade Confederate scientist have drawn the attention of more than the British Secret Service.
From the seedy dens of Cairo’s black market to the backwater villages of the Nile where the burst of Gatling Gun fire is the nationalist war cry, Lazarus finds himself up to his neck in sinister plots, political machinations and the stench of the dead given frightful mobility by modern science. But an unlikely ally blows in on the desert wind – Katarina Mikolavna; an old acquaintance and the Russian Tsar’s deadliest weapon.
Once again the two agents find themselves on opposing sides in a clandestine war of empires that casts its dirigible-shaped shadow over the burning sands of North Africa.