Sarah Pemberton Strong

Novelist and Poet

“...a masterful exploration of longing and its consequences...
spellbinding insights into the complexity of desire.”

—Publishers Weekly

Ray Shepard is a wealthy architect who has mystified his friends by marrying Evelyn, a woman who works at a nail salon. Evelyn, in turn, hides a secret past about her former life in a circus, her ex-husband’s mysterious death, and the colorful tattoos she carefully conceals under her clothes.

When Evelyn starts to cave under the pressure of living in Ray’s rarified world, she suggests they take in Ingrid, a sixteen-year-old girl with blue hair, a pet iguana, and no place to stay for the summer. As Evelyn and Ray both make her their confidante, drawing her into the heart of what threatens their marriage, Ingrid increasingly adopts the noir alter ego of “Detective Slade”—fedora and all—in order to solve the mysteries that threaten to engulf all three characters.