Three young women have been brutally assaulted and murdered in the city of Philadelphia. Lieutenant William Fogarty, a time-toughened cop hardened by personal tragedy, is shocked by the brutality of the crimes. His only lead comes from medical examiner Josef Tanaka. Half Japanese and half American, Tanaka, a skilled practitioner of the martial arts, claims to recognize the method used in the attacks: a karate strike known as nukite, or spear hand. Fogarty has nowhere else to turn.An unlikely combination, Fogarty and Tanaka, forced together by circumstance and neither completely trusting the other, conduct a desperate hunt, trawling the city streets of Philadelphia and into the dangerous underbelly of the killing arts. Pursuing the Mantis, a creature who uses the flesh of his victims in a sadistic, macabre ritual of self-purification, Fogarty and Tanaka endanger the lives of those closest to them as they inch perilously close to the precipice of their own worst fears and weaknesses.