In the year 1938, when Russia was paralyzed by Stalin's terror, a small state archives in Moscow received an old manuscript called Revelation of Fire that had in earlier days been kept secret in a monastery for a long time. When, in current time, a Dutch Slavonic scholar and a female archivist discover that the manuscript, though under lock and key, has disappeared. Eager to discover the secrets of this mysterious religious text they decide to investigate and begin to reconstruct its history and its changes in ownership over the past 200 years. Russian history, adventure, mysticism, and love stories are among the ingredients of this novel, which casts a light on the experiences of several individuals in various time periods who have one thing in common: an attraction to the Revelations contained therein. There are many surprises along the way. The best laid schemes of previous and would be owners regularly come to naught, the best of intentions turn out disastrously, the worthy fail to receive their just deserts, and evil, in the long run, brings forth good. The action is played out during the most notable periods of Russian history: in the 1870's, for example, when the first socialist groups made their appearance; in the Civil War of 1919; in the period of Stalin's terror; in the time of the 'stagnation' before the 'perestroika' and finally in contemporary Russia as one learns, incrementally, about the unorthodox teachings of an unusual Russian Orthodox monk.