Hattie Marshall, a thirteen-year-old girl from the Texas countryside, lives through a hurricane and finds that some things are more precious than gold in this story of adventure and danger on the south Louisiana coast.
Hattie is excited when her friend Eric Siegen and his family invite her to accompany them on their trip to Grand Isle and New Orleans. This trip, in October 1893, is her first time away from home, and she is amazed by all the wonders around her—a swimming porpoise, a tasty beignet, an elegant cathedral.
But as she and Eric join Tom Guidroz, a young local, on a treasure hunt near Jean Lafitte’s old fort on a barrier island, Tom’s attitude and the weather become unpredictable. When an unexpected hurricane strikes the coastline, Hattie emerges triumphantly from the wreckage, having gained a greater understanding of the value of God, family, and friends.