St Petersburg, 1911: Inna Feldman has fled the pogroms to take refuge with relatives in Russia's capital city. Welcomed into the flamboyant Leman family, she is apprenticed into their violin-making workshop. But revolution is in the air and, as society begins to fracture, she is forced to choose between her heart and her head. She loves her brooding cousin, Yasha, but he is wild and destructive; Horace Wallich, the Englishman who works for Fabergé, is older and promises security and respectability. As the revolution descends into anarchy and blood-letting, a commission to repair a priceless Stradivarius violin offers Inna a means of escape. But which man will she choose to take with her?