The first book in Russia's acclaimed Silk Road Trilogy, available in English for the first time, is full of mystery, memorable characters, and nonstop adventure. In the heart of the world, where empires collide, Nanidat Maniakh, a dashing trader, is enjoying the good life as head of a powerful silk dynasty. Yet Fate has other plans: Nanidat's world is suddenly torn asunder by murder and revolution, and the fate of his homeland hangs in the balance. Overnight, this able merchant must become a cunning warrior and spy, while eluding assassins, negotiating with kings, and pursuing a long-lost love. This thrilling and rich historical thriller, set in 749 CE—in the part of the world we now know as Iran, Iraq, and Central Asia—vividly re-creates a lost world, yet its passions and conflicts are entirely relevant to the present day.