A tanker steaming through the deep Northwest Providence Channel of the Bahamas comes across a shocking sight: a lone dinghy carrying Captain Julian Harvey and the body of a young girl. They are all that remain of the ketch Bluebelle, a handsome 60-foot sailing yacht chartered by the Duperrault family of Green Bay, Wisconsin. But their happy family vacation went terribly wrong when, according to Harvey, a violent and unexpected squall smashed the giant main mast, killed Harvey's wife and the others, and sank the boat. Harvey found the child floating dead and, as far as he knows, he is the only survivor. Or is he?
Four days later, just as Captain Harvey is testifying at a Coast Guard hearing about the tragic accident, amazing news of another survivor arrives. Eleven-year-old Terry Jo Duperrault has been found barely alive on a flimsy cork-and-canvas float, with no food or water. Harvey takes the news calmly, finishes his testimony, and leaves ... to commit bloody suicide.
This is the chillingly detailed inside story of what really happened during that trip and the decades-long courage of the sole survivor of a murderous crime.