On any weekend night in Kabuki-cho, an entertainment district in Shinjuku, Tokyo, as many as 400,000 revelers crowd into the equivalent of a little more than a dozen city blocks. At a time when the afterglow of Japan's bubble economy can still be felt in the streets, three separate shootings occur, leaving four cops dead and a fifth in critical condition. With its credibility and prestige on the line, the Metropolitan Police Department launches a massive investigation, but the task force remains unable to identify a suspect. Meanwhile, Detective Samejima, 36, of the local Shinjuku Ward Police Department, realizes that the gun used in the murders had been modified, and this puts him on the trail of a twice-incarcerated illicit gun crafter named Kizu. While virtually every other investigator remains occupied with the task force, Samejima notes the disappearance of Kizu's gay partner Kazuo and pursues the hypothesis that Kazuo made off with a gun that had been modified by Kizu, using it as the murder weapon. He locates Kizu's workshop and forces his way in, intending to make an arrest, but finds himself taken captive instead . . .
Having passed the advanced-level civil service exam, Samejima is on the elite career track in the police bureaucracy when he incurs the wrath of the higher-ups and is exiled to the Shinjuku Police Department for arresting a fellow officer for misconduct, and also for being in possession of a document?the final testament of a cop who killed himself?that reveals secrets that are damaging to the police hierarchy. Pursuing not only crime but police corruption as well, Samejima works on his own to track down his suspects, then quietly sneaks up to attack like a shark. His romantic interest is Sho, 22, the vocalist for a rock band. Combining the pleasures of a puzzle-solving police procedural with hardboiled grittiness, this book not only launched author Arimasa Osawa into bestsellerdom, but became the spark for a golden age of police novels. The Shinjuku-zame series spawned by this work has now grown to ten titles.