Julie has lost her brother. Tarjei died in Afghanistan, and so did Kristian and Trygve. They were all from the same village. Tarjei’s death leads to the dissolution of the family. Her parents can’t handle their son’s death, nor keep up with the farm work. Paradoxically, this becomes Julie’s great chance to achieve her dreams. She has always wanted to take over the farm, and her new effort is perhaps just as much a mark of her own ambitions, as it is a sign of empathy and duty.
Julie is one of three narrators in the novel. The very depressed neighbour boy, Sigurd, who was in love with Trygve, carries another part of the narration. The third, Julie’s estranged boyfriend, Mats, brings the outsider’s perspective to the story.