Julius Newton, acclaimed author and scholar, has made the musical discovery of his lifetime – an unknown but magnificent work by one of the world's most popular composers. Its release will cap a glorious career, bringing fame and fortune beyond even Newton's own immodest dreams. But at the very moment of revelation, something goes terribly wrong. The mysterious Charles Pym, who brought Newton the secret score, goes missing. Friends turn foe; proof crumbles in the hand. Just who is hoaxing whom, and why? The Hoax is a psychological mystery of childhoods gone wrong and the dangerous nature of revenge.