It\'s the summer of 1959. For the families who live on Connors Lane in Washington DC, life is still defined by what one did during WWII. Behind each door lives a possible spy or Nazi sympathizer. But it is also the summer of an inexplicable spider infestation - surely evidence of "insect warfare" by the Russians, thinks our young narrator John, and his best friends, Ivan and Max. When a rare, scorpion-like vinegaroon is discovered and sequestered for museum study, the boys, along with their tomboy accomplice, Beatriz, hatch a risky midnight plan to steal the venomous creature for their own devious purposes. What happens next will change John\'s life forever.