Hotchclaw is a HBC - Historically Black College - a survivor among the many small southern colleges that came into being after slavery to promote higher education for Black students in an era of segregation. Although struggling with financial difficulties, Hotchlaw is ready to celebrate its one hundredth anniversary. But under the surface of the jubilation and pride there are internal conflicts - professional, psychological and sexual among the president and faculty. And, a shocking discovery about one of Hotchclaw's most admired faculty members adds more sparks to the flames that set off a maze of entanglements reading to a predominantly white northern university. Ann Allen Shockley, with her dramatic sense and characteristic humour has crafted a vibrant novel that draws the reader to the characters, their rising tension, and the very real world she has created.