Bosch is involved in an incident at work and has been put on involuntary stress leave. He must go through therapy sessions to be able to return to work. This involves talking about the incident and himself with Carmen Hinojos, a police psychologist. Three months ago, Bosch broke up with his girlfriend, Sylvia Moore. Carmen asks Harry to verbalize his mission in life. Harry decides that his mission is to investigate his mother's murder. She had been a prostitute and was strangled when Harry was twelve. He gets the murder book from the police archives and reviews the case.