It's 1955. Small time New York City gumshoe Harry Angel is hired through a law firm by a mysterious man named Louis Cyphre. Cyphre tells Harry that choosing him as the private investigator for this case was by no accident despite Harry not knowing who Cyphre is or in turn Cyphre not directly stating why he chose Harry. The case is to locate a man by the name of Johnny Favorite, a popular singer before World War II, who served in the war and supposedly was institutionalized due to his injuries since, although Cyphre has not seen Favorite during that time. As Harry progresses through the case, he doesn't quite trust Cyphre as every step Harry takes leads to people angry about his questions and/or who want to beat him. Johnny's associates are highly populated by those into mysticism and particularly voodoo, which takes Harry to New Orleans. As Harry continues his investigation, one by one, the people he interviews turn up dead. Although Harry isn't sure if he wants to continue with the case, he does so if only to satisfy his own curiosity as to Johnny's whereabouts and why Cyphre wants to find him.