The time: the 1960s. The place: a mid-sized town in northern Florida.
Police patrolling a middle-class neighborhood discover Waldo Fleenor bleeding profusely in the driveway of his own home. As the officers wait for an ambulance, stanch the young man’s wounds, and question him about his attacker, Waldo mentally revisits past events that led to his present situation.
The trouble begins with the arrival of his baby brother, Jamie, who replaces three-year-old Waldo as the primary object of their parents’ affection.
As time passes, the differences between the brothers become more apparent. While intelligent, sensitive Waldo grows up homely and sickly, Jamie develops into a handsome, athletic youth. By the time the siblings reach their teens, the contrast between popular, good-natured Jamie and brooding outcast Waldo is as obvious as day and night.
Waldo’s vague animosity towards his brother crystallizes into bitterness. Ultimately, Waldo decides the only way he can step into the light is to eliminate the long shadow cast by his brother. For Waldo to truly live, Jamie must die, and Waldo sets in motion a twisted plan to remove his hated rival once and for all.