When an obscure novelist's work deeply inspires American college student Ruby Darrison, she decides to teach herself the Russian language. Though she soon realizes she needs a mentor, and finds what she believes to be the perfect teacher in the drastically older, local engineer by the name of Stanislav Zhlokov. They experience a connection both swift and toxic. A dangerous obsession potent enough to take them all the way from rural Indiana to the heart of Moscow, and eventually... to the very top of the world. Ruby's soul is tested through a traumatic and harrowing journey. One that leaves her fighting for her freedom, her identity, and her very life.

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