What starts out as a simple family-history project turns into an obsessive hunt for the truth behind an old family feud. Andy Bonner is determined to get to the bottom of a mystery involving an ancestor who had supposedly stolen his parents' money and been disowned. The more he learns from his Great Aunt Winnie and her nemesis, his best friend's great-grandmother, the more he needs to know. His investigation takes him from the World Wide Web to the town cemetery, to family sources who refuse to talk.
Twelve year old Andy Thomas isn't thrilled with his teacher's assignment to explore family history. But when he starts asking questions about his ancestors, he is surprised to discover a black sheep named Coley Joe Bonner. No one wants to discuss what happened in the family's past.