It is 1780, in the midst of the American Revolution, in Camden, South Carolina, and fourteen-year-old Caroline Whitaker, her step mother Sarah and her bratty older sister Georgia Ann are confined to one small room of their spacious Southern plantation home. British soldiers, led by Colonel Rawdon are occupying the place. The Colonel is also courting Georgia Ann.
Caroline and her Negra caretaker, Miz Melindy, travel to get her 'almost' brother Johnny. He converts into an American patriot, after being whipped and spanked by a British officer for not handing over his second most prized horse- Grey Goose, aside from the most thoroughbred blooded mare in all of St. Mark's Parish, Fearnaught. Johnny's horses make many conflicts throughout the novel, including Caroline's sore wound over Kit's dap and dapping.