On April 10, 1845, a fierce fire assaults Pittsburgh and destroys one-third of the city. Four thousand people are left homeless. While clearing the rubble, searchers discover the body of a young girl. They assume that she died as a result of the fire, but Constable John Parker suspects murder and links this death to another he remembers from his childhood. Haunted by the memories of his past, Parker embarks on his own investigation. He believes that this is the latest in a series of unsolved murders dating back seventeen years. Pittsburgh comes to life for the reader as Parker searches the city’s narrow streets for a killer and the truth behind the girl’s death. The answer to the riddle will be revealed in The Burnt District.