The Leander pearls were stolen nineteen years ago. The thief was caught, but the pearls were never found, and there is still a $25,000 reward for anyone who finds them. Then somebody comes to private detective Carmady with a story about a guy who knows where the pearls are hidden. Carmady agrees to talk to the guy who says he knows. But he finds him dead in his bed, with burned feet, and it seems there are quite a lot of people in Los Angeles who have heard the story, and who are out looking for the Leander pearls . . .