British Army Major Harry Maxim has just completed Resistance training in preparation against a possible Russian military action on England, when suddenly the President of the U.S. is shot at in London by somebody using a Russian rifle. When there is no official response to this provocative act, Maxim takes the reconnaissance initiative. With the initially half-hearted help of his friend George Harbinger of the ministry of defense, he sets out to track down the originators of the assassination attempt. He comes to suspect early on that the act was neither perpetrated by the Russians nor actually aimed at the President, and the trail which leads him to the Crocus List and its secret operations takes him from London to Washington, St. Louis and East Berlin. This third adventure featuring the immensely likable Major (after The Secret Servant and The Conduct of Major Maxim) brims with intelligence and spirit. It's an irrepressible, entertaining and thought-provoking jaunt through the ins and outs of the international espionage trade.