They make an odd pair: Verena Vitek, a youthful refugee from Serbia, and John Borrowman, a London, Ontario zoologist moonlighting as an animal-rights activist. He's haunted by a recent trip to China during which he witnessed the barbaric practice of milking moon bears for their bile, an ingredient in a growing variety of commercial products. To stop a Chinese company from harvesting bears for their bile in Algonquin Park, he finds himself having to rely on Verena - emotionally damaged, dysfunctional, but a crack shot with her AR-7 rifle. Others too, become involved; individuals with agendas of their own. The bears may be saved, but death and lives forever changed are part of the human price to be paid.