American expatriate Paul Bauer, a freelance journalist living in Paris with his French lover, thinks he has it made. And then his mother dies. When he returns for the funeral to a little town in northern Minnesota, he encounters unsettling contradictions to his understanding of his family history and begins a quest into his past that leads him back among the dead. He hears the voices of his parents talking of dreams, desires, and loss, and inexorably their story leads him to ask the question--the very question his family has always wanted to prevent him from asking: What really did happen in that whiteout thirty-five years ago? The answer changes everything. -- From cover.