A brilliant novel from one of America's finest literary crime writers... On a hot summer afternoon in Washington DC 1972, three white teenagers, stoned and fearless, drive a stolen car into a rough, black neighbourhood. Taunting local black kids through the car window, they speed off to what they think is safety. They find themselves trapped in a dead-end street whilst an angry mob gathers. In the ensuing chaos, two of the white boys manage to escape, but Billy - the third friend - is shot dead. Thirty-five years later, one of these men reaches out to another, opening a door that could lead to salvation. However, another survivor of that day is now out of prison, and is looking for reparation in any form he can find it . . .