Just before dawn in Stone Harbor, Maine, two men meet in the bathhouse in a wooded park. "So what do you have in mind?" one asks. "A little surprise," the other answers before beating him to death with a steel flashlight.
Newspaper editor John Quinn and his wife have returned to his hometown to raise their son, but real estate prices have soared and natives are being pushed out. Then a popular politician and family man is murdered at a well-known gay pickup spot. The victim was Quinn's childhood friend, Paul Stanwood. Quinn insists Paul was only investigating a police crackdown at the park.
When the police chief and others seem to ignore and downplay obvious clues, Quinn takes matters into his own hands. Even though his wife's car is vandalized and a source is severely beaten after he speaks out on the hidden violence against gays, Quinn refuses to stop looking for answers. With so many people hiding secrets -- secrets some are willing to kill for -- Quinn has to find out the truth about his friend's murder before he, too, is permanently silenced.