Idyllic Martha's Vineyard is not so idyllic after all. It's still a special place, with gorgeous panoramas of sea and sky, good fishing, and fine, homecooked food, but it's not always the haven that people seek. Ex-Boston cop J. W. Jackson came to the Vineyard looking for a place to forget the violence of war and city streets. His life now is better than it's ever been, but, as he knows, nothing is perfect. Nurse Zee Madeiras won't agree to marry him, and she's announced plans to leave the Vineyard to look into attending medical school. Geraldine Miles has arrived to escape a violent lover. She seeks safety, but she soon learns that nowhere is really secure. In protecting her, J.W. makes an enemy. With Zee gone, perhaps for good, J.W. finds that the Vineyard has lost its zest. He gladly accepts an offer from his friend, Professor John Skye, to visit him at Weststock College a few hours away on the mainland. Weststock's not idyllic either. Two close calls might be possible, but a third assassination attempt back on the Vineyard convinces J.W that somebody has him targeted. As J.W. tries both to stay alive and to discover the identity and motivation of his would-be killer, the trail takes him far from the Vineyard, to Colorado. J.W. has an appointment with a dangerous and unpredictable adversary before he can return to his beloved Vineyard where, if he's lucky, both Zee and the bonito will be waiting.