This story starts with the almost science-fiction style opening of a man waking up as someone else. After the initial shock of seeing a face he doesn’t recognise in his shaving mirror, Giles Denison has to find out who he really is and what he is doing in an unfamiliar Oslo hotel bedroom.
Luckily Harold Feltham Meyrick, his new persona, seems to have a fairly healthy bank-balance and so there is no immediate problem of being turfed out into the street.
Unfortunately there are plenty of people who are interested in Meyrick and one by one Denison has to pick his way through the minefield of making their acquaintance without letting-on they are complete strangers to him. One of the hardest challenges is a daughter he never knew he had.
There are car chases, femme fatales, a cat and mouse chase through the northern Finnish nature reserve of the Sompio, and an undercover mission from west to east in the search of hidden technological treasure. Years before, when that part of Russia was still in Finland a scientist had discovered a way of using X-ray lasers as a handy incoming missile defence.