Mia cannot stay in one place for too long. Perhaps her Jewish blood is made of nomadic DNA or maybe she will always be captive to the ghost who rages inside her, drawing her towards human suffering and words on the page.
After years of travelling from one site of human tragedy to the next, Mia suddenly receives a call from Asher, a figure from the shadows of her childhood, reminding her of everything she has lost.
Out of loyalty to a past Mia neither trusts nor wants to remember, she travels to nurse Asher while he is dying. On his deathbed, he hands Mia the dreamcloth, a small treasure woven by a seamstress in a grim shtetl in Lithuania, which both holds and veils the mystery of a forbidden love affair between the poet Maya, Mia’s paternal grandmother and a stranger just before Word War 2.
Returning to her homeland South Africa, Mia tries to reconnect with people and places she left behind. She journeys through her childhood, trying to make sense of the injustices she witnessed when she was too young to understand them and the gaps and fractures they have left in her heart. What happened to her beloved nanny Sarafina? And her father Issey? Her mother Fran, obsessed with tending the roses in her perfectly manicured garden is frozen and silent, offering her no clues or redemption.
With the dreamcloth tucked into her bra, under her heart, Mia slowly begins to connect the dots of the past and to piece together the series of events with tragic ramifications that ripple through the generations.
This is a sprawling epic that weaves together the present, the past and the distant past, reminding us that all we love is never truly lost.