When Jimmie Darling is admitted to Beckomberga psychiatric hospital outside Stockholm, his daughter Jackie starts spending more and more time there. And when her mother leaves for a holiday by the Black Sea, the hospital becomes her whole world.
The doctor in charge is Edvard Winterson, who is not adverse to taking his patients out for night on the town: "e;A night outside the hospital walls will make you human again,"e; he insists to his charges.
At the hospital Jackie also meets Inger Vogel, an "e;angelic nurse in clogs"e; who seems to inhabit a twilight zone between order and devastation, and Sabina, a patient who beguiles both Jimmie and Dr Winterson, with her beads, her archery and her obsession with freedom and death.
In Sara Stridsberg's breathtakingly beautiful novel, the psychiatric hospital, set in a lovely park close to a lake, takes on near-mythic dimensions, both as an avenging angel and as a redeemer of lost souls.