The Frayn family of Washington, D.C., is coping pretty well with twenty-first century realities of life—snipers, bomb threats, natural disasters, etc. Then, in the moment it takes Claire Frayn to dig for her umbrella, her politically outspoken brother Steven is shot down right next to her on the library steps. Steven's murder shatters the tightly knit Frayn family, and his sister Claire becomes determined to unravel the mystery of why her brother was killed. Searching for answers, Claire meets Victor, an enigmatic stranger who claims to know who killed Steven. Claire begins an unusual correspondence with the suspected assassin, but instead of uncovering the truth of her brother's death, she finds herself drawn to this man, and increasingly apprehensive about cooperating with Victor's plans to avenge Steven's death.