Nina Tanleven and her best friend Chris are delighted to spend the remainder of the summer with Nina's architect father at the rambling old country inn he has been hired to restore. On the afternoon they arrive, the girls pause for a closer look at some faded Civil War photographs hanging in the hallway, fascinated by one picture in particular of a handsome Confederate soldier whose dreamy eyes hold them enthralled. But in the midst of all their oohing and aahing a shivery sensation passes between them, like an icy hand on the back of their necks. It feels as if someone is standing there with them, looking right over their shoulders! This strange presence proves to be none other than the ghost of the handsome soldier himself, and he appears to be trying to get the girls' attention, haunting their room at night, even sitting down at the dinner table with them! When Nina and Chris finally hear his sad story, they are swept up in a dangerous tale involving a secret room, treachery, and the Underground Railroad.