Elizabeth Shaw finds herself in a dilemma of great magnitude when she's appointed by Judge J.T. Lockman to represent the most hated man in the rural county where she practices law. Her client is accused of killing a popular legal assistant who worked for the most powerful lawyer in the county, a man who's also about to announce his candidacy for governor of the state. Elizabeth's dream that she might someday be appointed as a judge begins to dissipate when she takes on this highly controversial case, but disappears completely when the married gubernatorial candidate makes it clear that he wants an affair with her as the cost of any such appointment. This novel continues the arc of change in a rural county from the prejudices of the past to a more hopeful future when the county's first female trial attorney enters the scene. She's a woman who knows her way around the courtroom and how to accept the foibles of the men who surround her in the male dominated legal community, making her very popular with the courthouse regulars. Her talents are less accepted by some of the good old boys who run the power base of the county, but she's prepared to take on anyone who gets in the way of proper representation of her clients. When her criminal client avows his innocence, her determination to do the best she can no matter what the consequences to her personal life puts her on a collision course with the most powerful lawyer in the county. It's a battle to the end for the truth to come out about what really happened to the beautiful young assistant whose death haunts everyone who knew her.