The story begins with three girls coming together as friends in a small North Carolina town. Liz Harding’s father has come to train American Saddlebreds at Vista Farm as well as Leslie Jenkins and her father when he is hired as assistant manager. Colleen Mckean has been born and raised in Allen and is crazy about Saddlebreds. A wealthy horse owner comes to Vista Farm looking for someone to ride his horse. His inappropriate behavior with girls, especially Leslie and the innocent Colleen, precipitates as unfortunate series of events resulting in the death of one of the girls. The response of her family and the town’s inhabitants comprises the rest of the tale.