In this fifth (Not by Death Alone, Death by Proxy, Mind Over Death, and Death Be Thy Name being the first four) of a series of novels, Will Francis, professor of computer science at a small university in North Dakota, finds himself presenting a paper at a conference in Kansas City. During his visit he meets and eventually joins with the mistress of quantum computation on a cargo ship to London to gain funding for their now joint project; Francis to create artificial life on the fastest computer in the world. Unfortunately, an unusual storm catches up to the ship and a brutal collision with an errant iceberg sinks it with Francis alone escaping in a lifeboat. Rescued, he heads back to North Dakota for his marriage to Cassie, his betrothed, only to find a hostage situation that only he can resolve. And involving those who believe he holds the future of the world in his hands.