When seventeen-year-old Valerie Russell discovers her boyfriend is secretly screwing her mother, her life falls apart. Betrayed and angry, she flees to New York City, where she takes up with a feral trio who have made their home in a network of abandoned subway tunnels. She finds their friendship eerily beguiling, as they drag her deeper into their damaged world. Impulsive Lolli talks of monsters in the subway and shoots up a shimmery amber-coloured powder that makes the shadows around her dance. Severe Luis claims he can make deals with creatures no one else can see. And then there is Dave, Luis's brother, who makes the mistake of letting Val tag along as he makes a delivery to a woman who turns out to have goat hooves instead of feet. For other exiles inhabit the hidden corners of the city -- isolated fey who have offended their Courts and been sentenced to live out their banishment surrounded by the stench of iron and steel. Ravus the troll is one such, and when Lolli unwisely steals from him, Val becomes bound to his service in recompense. But as he begins to unbend to her, she realises that beneath his embittered exterior there beats a lonely and vulnerable heart.And when an old enemy threatens him, and with him their fragile and blossoming relationship, Val's fierce certainty propels her beyond fear and into the dark depths of the Night Court -- where no price is too high for her to save him.