Cincinnati homicide Detective Will Borders now walks with a cane and lives alone with constant discomfort. He's lucky to be alive. He's lucky to have a job, as public information officer for the department. But when a star cop is brutally murdered, he's assigned to find her killer. The crime bears a chilling similarity to killings on the peaceful college campus nearby, where his friend Cheryl Beth Wilson is teaching nursing. The two young victims were her students. Most homicides are routine, the suspects readily apparent. These are definitely not. Once again, this unlikely pair teams up to pursue a sadistic predator before he kills again. But finding him will mean uncovering some of the darkest secrets in a Midwestern metropolis where change is slow, tradition and history lay as thick as the summer humidity, and lethal danger can hide in the most respected places.