Two people connect, but for some reason they won't settle into a fixed relationship together; they're always drifting apart, yet drawn together irresistibly. It seems they are empty without the other to complete themselves, but they're scared of the vulnerability and the overwhelming power of the other. They don't resolve this contradiction; their lives barrel on, in different directions. Reading the ending, I felt twisted inside, sad. Rooney writes with grace; her prose is comforting. I don't want to put the book down. However, the tension is at times frustrating. It's as if the characters are unaware of themselves, or simply can't find what they truly need. But Rooney does understand love and captures it beautifully.