Christopher, a young travel writer, arrives at a riverside resort in Kerala to meet Koman, a famous kathakali dancer. Immediately he is sucked into a world of masks and repressed emotions. Koman is instantly drawn to the enigmatic young man with his incessant questions about the past-but so is his niece Radha. Excluded from this triangle is Shyam, Radha's husband, who can only watch helplessly as she embraces Chris with a passion that he has never been able to draw from her. As the drama unfolds, the nuances and contradictions of the relationships being made-and unmade-come alive in this searing novel of art and adultery.