Reporter Jake Fischer arrives in Bright Falls to interview a resident psychiatrist about his new book. After hitting a deer on a forest road and a series of odd encounters with townspeople, he soon finds himself blacking out and losing time, waking up in the middle of a forest and other locations where he wasn't previously. He also develops an aversion to light, finds strange and elaborate notes he has taken and suspects that he was somehow involved with the disappearance of a local motel owner. As his perceptions falter, he witnesses the signs of a mysterious epidemic sweeping the town. The longer he stays in Bright Falls, the more unpredictable his blackouts and behaviors become, leaving him no choice but to attempt an escape.