A young American girl is found dead in Gota Kanal, Swedens largest channel. Since there are hardly any clues or evidence at all it seems as if the murder cant be solved. Martin Beck and his men are assigned to the case. Soon they find a likely suspect and together with a police woman they begin a cat and mouse game to catch him.
Goubi, the simpleton of his village in the French Department Allier, has but one wish: to see Paris. One day, the truckers Grafouillère deposit a drunk Goubi in the biggest market of Paris (the "Halles").
After a flight back home, Sam Hendrix returns with a doll he innocently acquired along the way. As it turns out, the doll is actually stuffed with heroin, and a group of criminals led by the ruthless Roat has followed Hendrix back to his place to retrieve it.
The ten-year marriage of Mark and Joanna Wallace is on the rocks. In flashback they recall their first meeting, memorable moments in their courtship and early wedded life, their travels through Europe, their broken vow never to have children, and their increasing tensions that led to both of them having extra-marital affairs.
Mikolás and his brother Adam rob travelers for their tyrannical father Kozlík. During one of their "jobs" they end up with a young German hostage whose father escapes to return news of the kidnapping and robbery to the King.