Britt Montero is a crime reporter for a major Miami newspaper, and an oddity in a man's domain: a blond, green-eyed Cuban-American woman tough enough to investigate even the most terrifying of homicides, but with a tender spot for the city's underdogs. The latest report to come in seems fairly cut and dried: several cops on the midnight shift chase a black motorist, and the fleeing man, a former football hero, winds up dead. However, as Britt begins her story on the accident, she discovers a number of disturbing facts about that night. Despite warnings to stay away, she starts to investigate what really happened--taking the reader from the high-intensity atmosphere of the newsroom to riding on the midnight beat with the cops, to the outraged black community that threatens to erupt into violence. Along the way she consorts with her own network of contacts, both solid citizens and nefarious nightbirds--and takes on a forbidden lover, a man she may not be able to trust. As the city explodes in a riot, Britt is caught up in events that bring the novel to a heart-shuddering climax.