While visiting Monticello for the bicentennial celebration of Thomas Jefferson's presidency, Homer Kelly is disturbed to discover our third president in trouble with historians over the issues of slavery and Sally Hemings. Meanwhile, Thomas Dean, a mysterious trespasser, is disturbing the work of Homer's former student, Fern Fisher, who is struggling to restore Jefferson's reputation. On top of everything else, a serial killer who preys on young women is on the loose. When Tom Dean is arrested as a suspect, Homer, perpetual friend of the underdog, takes on his case. All of these intrigues converge at Jefferson's bicentennial celebration, where, from among the throngs of visitors, the killer has selected his next victim. Can Homer discover the killer's identity before the next attack?