A novel about connections in a changing world of friends, lovers, family, illness, and death, this unique narrative tells the story of Marie King - a 59-year-old divorcée from Sydney’s affluent north shore. Having devoted her rather conventional life to looking after her husband and three children, Marie is experiencing an identity crisis. Forced to sell the family home now that her children have moved out, Marie expresses herself by getting a tattoo and, consequently, forges a friendship with tattoo artist Rhys.
Imbued with the radical ideas of Spinoza and with the ancient Hebrew Kabbalism, Ruth bas Elazar Saul's revolutionary methods of dealing with illness lead to accusations of witchcraft and imprisonment. Her love affair with Detleff von Tennen, a local Catholic bishop, may save her in the short term, but at a time of brutal repression and religious persecution there are few options for those who break taboos.