Lacey O'Neill's stability is threatened when she is named guardian of her childhood best friend's 11-year-old daughter. Mackenzie is justifiably angry that her young mother was killed by a drunk driver, and that she is forced to leave everyone she has ever known to live with a virtual stranger. In the midst of all these conflicts Lacey is also juggling two men: bad-boy Bobby who took her virginity at age 14 and then spent the summer with her best friend, and Rick, an extremely attractive law professor who is visiting the Outer Banks while working on a book. On top of all this, the man who murdered her mother is up for parole and Lacey's victim statement may affect the decision.
The story reminds a little of the moral dilemmas that Jodi Picoult is so famous for, but somehow the ending is a little bit of a disappointment. Reality is not always as easily resolved as this story makes believe, and that is a shame.