TAINTED WATER takes place during a 2017 water crisis in the city of Sunset and mainly follows the lives of four families, though several others are sketched in. The Train family is central —26-year-old Lana, her three young children, her much older brother Jake, her father and grandfather. Jake has worked for over a decade at “Ameri-Mart”—a huge, discount superstore chain with stores around the country. The novel also refers to other industries that used to operate in Sunset, employing most of the able-bodied residents. Since their closure decades ago, employment has been a struggle for many people in Sunset. Overall these families are low-income and struggling to get by. Some—nurse Capiletti and her husband—are better off. But most work in low-wage service industries and live paycheck to paycheck. Due to bacterial contamination in the water, there are Legionnaire’s disease deaths. The families also struggle with the horrifying realization that their children have been exposed to dangerously high levels of lead from the water. This novel is the story of death due to an entirely man-made water crisis.