The main character, Rae Newborn, is a middle-aged woman who is feeling the aches and pains of a life with too many blows in it. The story opens as her daughter and granddaughter are dropping her off on Folly, an island off the coast of Washington where she is determined to rebuild a home and her life in near-complete isolation. We quickly learn that she suffers from panic attacks and has attempted suicide many times in her life. Even now she carries with her a revolver as her answer to failure.
Rae's husband and daughter are dead and she had a nervous breakdown after someone attempted to rape her. And these events happen after she's already spent most of her life fighting the disease of depression.
Immediately upon being left on the island, she is beset by fears and a deep paranoia. As the story progresses, you begin to question—as does she—whether there really are people out to get her. Perhaps there is some foundation to her paranoia. We also begin to learn of Rae's ancestors and the story behind Folly and its burned-down home.
This report prepared by Bridgette Redman