How does someone decide to become an assassin? Does he kill only for those who request and pay for his services, or does he kill for pleasure? Does he kill to fulfill his own sense of justice? Is he necessarily a sociopath or a psychotic? Sometimes the answers are not so simple.
In Newark, New Jersey, thirteen-year-old Giuseppe witnesses the violent death of his father at the hands of the Mafia. His aunt and uncle rescue him from Newark and secretly take him to live in their home in the bucolic town of Wellington, Ohio. They establish a new name and identity for the boy: James Bassett.
James swears vengeance upon the three men guilty of his father's death. His uncle, a former Marine sniper, teaches the boy everything he knows about hunting and moving like a shadow through the woods and farmlands of Ohio. He has no idea that he is training James for a more deadly pursuit.
As an adult, James leads a public life in Wellington. He is well known and respected throughout the community. He operates a business, participates in amateur theatricals, writes a column for the Wellington Enterprise, is a devoted connoisseur of 19th and 20th century paintings, and is a loving father and husband.
He also lives a secret life as a relentless paid assassin.