Maggie Murphy is a lonely, overweight seventeen year old girl from small-town Montana who is desperate for a better life. Her grandparents gambled away the family's copper fortune, and now her alcoholic mother runs a struggling Bed and Breakfast out of their ancestral home. When a childhood acquaintance arrives back in St. Lawrence after a five year absence, Maggie is entranced. Nathan is beautiful, worldly, and educated. When the two of them strike up an unusual, but solid friendship, Maggie's world comes alive. She is devastated, then, when Nathan appears to be falling in love with her sister Celia, a girl whom Maggie worships. In desperation, Maggie decides to take matters into her own hands. She sets into motion a series of events without any thought of the consequences.