After his army service, Hudi left his family and kibbutz behind to roam the world, ultimately settling in California. His entire family lives in the shadow of his departure, fluctuating between accusation and fragile hope.
Grandpa Abrasha, among the pioneer kibbutz founders, considers him a traitor, while Hudi's parents wonder where his upbringing went wrong.
Hudi's sister Noga, 16, is disturbed by what Hudi's choice represents. Critical of her mother and unsure about herself, Noga feels comforted when she meets Nitzan, a friend of Hudi's who is 10 years her senior. Nitzan is Hudi's opposite: he would never dream of leaving the country. It is through Noga's eyes that this eloquent tale unfolds.
When Hudi turns up for a visit, the family comes to life. But Hudi has no intention of staying. In the final confrontation, he argues with Abrasha that Israel has changed. Beliefs are no longer clear-cut. Hudi leaves behind the thought that his grandfather's intolerance is worse than his own betrayal.
In this compelling story, Tepper highlights the tragedy of the generation of grand Israeli idealists who unknowingly fostered "indifferent heirs."