Ed's target is a strange pattern of circular dots in the middle of the Danakil Desert in Ethiopia, the hottest place on earth and a dangerous disputed border zone. After his initial excitement and relief to be on his own in a wild and beautiful place, things start to go wrong. A camel carrying all of his precious water gives him the slip, and Ed risks heat exhaustion trying to recapture both the beast and the water he needs to survive.

His health takes a serious turn for the worse, but Ed is determined to carry on to solve the riddle of the sands despite local tales of evil spirits and mysterious deaths in the desert.

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