‘Carina entered the final bend in the road between herself and her child, thinking only of Cari. As the car negotiated the narrow turn, she felt the backend shutter as it strained into the curve. Too late, she realized she was going too fast. The tires hit a patch of wet leaves, spinning the car in a graceful pirouette across the dark asphalt. For one aching, solitary moment it took flight, clearing a glorious path through the pounding rain until it plunged headfirst into the dimpled surface of the bay and sank beneath the waters.’ Book One, Age of Innocence
The story begins in 1965 with the tragic death of Texas socialite Carina Manichetti. Leaving behind a devastated daughter and a philandering husband, a course is set for young Cari, who will quickly learn to survive in a male dominated world of wealth and power. Her grammar school playmates, Mikey Townsend and Norman Lawson, were raised in the overarching shadow of Manichetti International, but their future heroics in Vietnam will ensure they become powerful men.
The story shifts to a small town deep in the American heartland. Sidney Ohio is a Rockwellian village of covered bridges, rolling hills and pristine farmland. Two childhood friends negotiate their coming of age against a backdrop of shifting moral values and the first US Army combat troops to arrive in Viet Nam.
What begins as a future of endless possibility for five young people will unfold in ways unimaginable. Caught between the ‘white picket fence’ of the 1950’s and the explosively liberal 1960’s, uninhibited passion will become entangled with selfish need. From the tangled jungles of Viet Nam, to the lush forests of Colombia, to Key West, Texas, and New Orleans, the five young people are unaware their destinies are slowly edging closer, carried by an invisible rip current that will leave them powerless to change their course.