Carla Jensen is big-hearted, bright, beautiful - and bipolar. A rebel by nature and a feisty champion of the downtrodden, she battles to resist the relentless pull of the murky waters of her illness, while remaining sceptical of her diagnosis and suspicious of medication. Adrift and exhausted by her mood swings, Carla witnesses a random act of violence on a city street and the ensuing confrontation impels her to challenge man's inhumanity to society's outcasts and ultimately to embark on a personal quest for healing and redemption. Her journey takes her into the maelstrom of disordered minds, across the sometimes hazardous terrain of sexual deviance, and into the dark heart of her own family and of Anna, her mother, who is haunted by her own sad secrets. Along the way Carla finds inspiration in unexpected places and laughter and joy in the underbelly of a city where most would see only pain.