A story about classical music, painting, New Hollywood, music television, horticulture, joy, trauma, and a young girl's audition at Juilliard. It's 1993 in San Francisco and Honoria, the only child of a family of classical musicians, is the sole inheritor of a beautiful upper-middle-class home located in St. Francis Wood. Living alone after having been recently bereft of her godfather, she dwells in a state of despair while she aimlessly embarks on a college career. However, a visit by a person from her godfather's past, a new best friend at school, and the competing interests of two tumultuously enamored boys reignite her sense of direction, which culminates in a whirlpool of perseverance, euphoria, tragedy, and rage revolving around a life-changing audition at Juilliard. The novel itself is woven into a tapestry of allusions and asides to art history, cinema, pop culture, painting, music theory, and gardening. In-depth references to Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Impressionist, and Modernist periods of music along with their composers abound. The Zeitgeist of popular music in 1993, namely the catapulting alternative rock and grunge scenes, also figures significantly into the events that unfold.