Because all my life had been a chrysalis, with you, Ada and Marshall and our house; even though we did other things and saw other people, the summers at the lake, and all those homeschoolers' parties, it was still always just - us.
Hilly and her brother, Ivan, have been homeschooled by their parents. All their lives it has been just the two of them - Ivan and Hilly, brother and sister, pilot and copilot. Until Hilly breaks out of their cozy cocoon to work on the local high school literary magazine as an extracurricular activity. Ivan feels betrayed: it's no longer just the two of them. And when Hilly goes into a depression after the suicide of a friend she has made at the magazine, she drifts even further away from Ivan. Hilly's parents insist that she see a psychotherapist. Ivan steps in to help manage Hilly's recovery by taking her to and from her appointments but compounds the betrayal by establishing his own relationship with the manipulative therapist.
Through the alternating voices of Hilly and Ivan, and drawing on the myths of Persephone and Narcissus, Kathe Koja explores the souls of two teenagers caught in a world where love takes you deeper than you ever dreamed you'd go.