Vanessa isn't her real name. Nobody knows what it is or where she came from. All they know is that the Woman in the Cupboard was found at the scene of a grisly double murder. And that she doesn't speak.
Detective Mo Sterling and her partner, D'Angelo, set out to solve the homicide casesthe murders of prominent Philadelphians Mr. and Mrs. Dixon Granger, and the investigation leads them into dark and unknown territory, a subculture of secrecy, power, potions, poisons, and dark passions. As the woman called Vanessa regains both her ability to speak and her memory, she recalls not only who killed the Grangers, but also the vicious crime that ripped her from her island home and forced her to be a servant in their kitchen. The investigation traps the detectives in a near-lethal web of drugs, deceit, and human trafficking, while Vanessa faces a dilemma. Should she help rescue the detectives and once more risk losing her own freedom? Or should she flee, avenge the wrongs done to her, and reclaim the life she should have had?