This is the coming-of-age story of an unusual girl who goes through a family crisis at the same time as she falls in love for the first time.
Ilil, a sixteen-year-old girl from Kibbutz Ein Gedi, near the Dead Sea, learns that her mother has cancer and must have chemotherapy. At a hospital in Jerusalem to which her mother is admitted, she meets Ya-ar, a young volunteer who dresses up as a clown to amuse the sick children. A strong, gentle bond develops between the two. Ya-ar helps Ilil come to terms with her mother-s illness and understand the dramatic changes that she will undergo as a result of the treatment. Ilil, in turn, helps Ya`ar to find his mother, a prima ballerina who suddenly disappeared while on a tour in Russia. And in her spare time at the kibbutz, Ilil goes on watching butterflies, especially the Monarch, the subject of her final biology essay-she got her passion for this butterfly from her mother, who is an entomologist. A finely drawn and sensitive story.