In 1998 Ramona returns to the village she grew up in as a child. Her father has just died, and she is going to tidy and sell the childhood home she has barely visited since the age of nineteen, when she married a captain. Ramona’s brothers have always lived in the village, and the older brother Roar has looked after the mentally challenged younger brother Tommy, who goes by the nickname the Dangle. Roar thinks that Ramona has never really cared about them and that she has only returned because she is after the money. He is not in a hurry to sell the house. In the meantime, an ominous question hovers over the story: What is going to happen to the Dangle?
While the story that takes place in the present moves towards a revelation of how the father died, the family’s history of emigration to the United States and Ramona’s experience of growing up in the 70s emerge through flashbacks. References to America are present throughout the novel, as seen in the characters’ fascination with glamour, longing to escape from everyday life and refusal to give up on the American dream.