Randall Garvey, a hard-drinking, self-educated billionaire and "doubting atheist," becomes president as the "lesser of three evils." He works secretly to satisfy his obsession with the search for extraterrestrial life. In silent partnership with the leaders of Russia and Japan, Garvey sends forth a covert mission to Mars. The mission is energized by the discovery of an ancient scroll that bears a stunning message for all mankind.
Drawn into the president's cosmic scheme is Dr. Lee Swann, a young physicist whom Garvey names as Science Advisor. Delighted at first, she has no way of knowing how deep is the black hole of presidential intrigue that awaits her. Garvey's "Wormwood" project will bring Swann and every person on the planet to a soul wrenching crisis. Garvey in his search will discover that he is the real "alien." Director of Central Intelligence, Rudy Waller: "God help us."