The 4th of July fireworks start early in the Mining City when a young woman falls from the tallest building in town. Mesa Dawson, the Mining City Messenger editor, arrives on the scene, concerned about what looks like a high-profile suicide. She races to find otherwise, and discovers a link between a good-looking stranger in search of the black book belonging to Butte's infamous seller of 'Elsie's babies.' The book contains names of infants, their birth parents, and who bought the babies. Adult adoptees, hoping for leads about their origin, have searched for it for years while others have kept it hidden. Now the book's come to light, all kinds of people are ready to do anything, including kill, to get at its contents.