This is the seventh book in the Anita Blake series. Anita is called to the hospital, where she learns that in killing Gabriel, the leader of the wereleopards, she has left them leaderless, and any one's meat, now they are suffering for her ignorance. Anita feels she has to do something, so she sets herself up as the temporary leader of the pard.
The Vampire council has come to town, seeking to determine if there needs to be punishment made for the death of another council member, Mr Oliver, from the third book, The Circus of the Damned. Also there is rumor that Jean Claude, Anita and Richard are starting up a new council and if this is true, it needs to be stopped before it undermines the existing counsel. With the council, a ghost from Jean Claude's past appears, Asher, who blames Jean Claude for the death of his love, and human servant, Julianna, as well as the horrible scarring he has lived with for the last 200 years.
The local Fire Marshal also consults with Anita over what appears to be a series of fires that appear to be started by a pyrokenetic. Can Anita, Jean Claude and Richard survive the encounter with the counsel?