It is 1865: the American Civil War is ending. Eliza Duane Mulvey sets out from Lafayette, Louisiana, the town her mother Mary Duane called home. Alone, she walks across a devastated country in search of a youngster she has not seen in four years. One of the hundred thousand children drawn into the war, his fate has been mysterious and will prove extraordinary.
It’s a walk that will have consequences for many seemingly unconnected survivors: a love-struck cartographer, a beautiful Latina poetess, rebel guerrilla Johnny Thunders, runaway slave Grace McNeile, and the mercurial revolutionary Giacomo O’Keefe, who commanded a brigade of Irish immigrants in the Union Army and is now governor of a Western wilderness where nothing is as it seems.