After her husband is drafted into the Air Force, Barbara meets Mr. Reaves, the town's reclusive millionaire who is rumored to have loved and murdered local debutant Bernadette. Mr. Reaves commissions Barbara to paint Bernadette's portrait in order to find closure. Barbara takes the commission but decides to assist the local sheriff in the investigation while creating a most memorable oil painting. Behind all great love is incredible pain. Theirs, Barbara discovers, was a masterpiece of dangerous secrets, complicated intrigue, and an ultimate betrayal.