In this gripping, darkly funny, and wise tale, Sheriff Lucian Wing confronts a series of challenges to his marriage, his work, and his settled way of life in rural Vermont. Wing is an experienced, practical man who enforces the law with a steady hand and a generous tolerance. Things are not as they should be, however, in the sheriff’s safe, protected domain. The outside world draws near, and threats multiply: the arrival in the district of a band of exotic, major-league criminals; an ambitious and aggressive deputy; the self-destructive exploits of a local bad boy; Wing’s discovery of a domestic crisis. The sheriff’s response to these diverse challenges calls on all the personal resources he has cultivated during his working life: patience, tact, and (especially) humor.