After twenty-six years working on offshore oil rigs for Big Coast Drilling, forty-six-year-old Karla Slidell is coming home to Brinkfield, Texas, for good. As a lanky girl with a peculiar braid, she blazed a trail as a roustabout in 1980. On her final flight home, however, her helicopter crashes; now shes missing in the Gulf of Mexico. As her excited family awaits her return, they instead get word she might not be coming back. They hope Karla can cheat death once again, as she has done since her birth.
Among those waiting are Joe, her house-husband and biggest fan since the seventh grade. Then theres Dangling Dooley, the Vietnam War chopper pilot who is Karlas constant source of exasperation. Theres Karlas lifelong friend, Darlene, with whom she experienced every kind of escapade life has to offer. Finally, Karlas insanely religious dad, Orvin, and her vacant, mousy mom, Joy, add to the mix.
These people, who form the fabric of Karlas life, hold out hope that she can be found alive and returned home to fulfill a dream that would positively impact so many lives.