Granted leave from the Questura, Commissario Guido Brunetti decides to finally take a well-earned break and visit Sant'Erasmo, one of the largest islands in the Venetian laguna.
The recuperative stay goes according to plan until Davide Casati, the mysterious caretaker of the villa Brunetti has been staying in, goes missing following a sudden storm. Nobody can find him - not his daughter, not his friends, and not the woman he's been secretly visiting . . .
Convinced that this was no accident, Brunetti feels compelled to set aside his holiday and discover what happened to the man who had recently become his friend.