The characters and events in this novel are fictional, although there are references to actual persons, places, and events. Visiting family in the deep south, a small white boy finds a friend during a time of racial intolerance. Warned against associating with "the coloreds" and despite an environment of prejudice he persists, and a deep and abiding friendship between two boys develops. As a young man searching for his place in the world, he and his friend join the Navy and find themselves in the middle of the war in Vietnam. Volunteering for special forces thrusts them into a world of uncertainty and death – and profound loss. Questioning the meaning of good and evil one young man is forever changed by his dark experiences in the black underbelly of our country's covert missions; and by the price of love.