Young Jode Woodbridge pioneers it to Phoenix, Arizona in 1875 with his mother and six year old sister, Honeybell, in a story by a writer who feels western history and relates character by suspenseful moment to moment narration. Just outside Phoenix, the bedraggled Woodbridges find and are welcomed in the household of lively, blustering, Irish Hasty Mott and his wife Minerva. It is these people and the other Arizonans- eccentric but rich Lord Duppa who had renounced England for a new country, Mexican lariat plaiter Don Roberto, newsman Edward Irvine, the druggist Dr. Thibodo- who help Jode hunt for his father who had come to the land two years before. Jode works with Don Roberto: he makes a rich friendship with Lord Duppa. But for a while his errant father seems almost elusive. Apaches threaten. Then Pa Woodbridge, who finds the Indian Passing Point where the army can prevent attacks, finds his family too, and a rewarding book ends happily.