When Lily sets off in her new profession as a development worker in West Africa, she hopes it will be the start of a new, more fulfilling life - far from the trendy gallery scene in Detroit.

For two years, in a remote Togolese village, Lily must get used to bucket showers, a life without the internet, and her neighbours' fear of sorcerers. But as she becomes more deeply involved with the community, and makes friends with a local girl, she finds that trying to help can bring unforeseen and sometimes devastating consequences.

Based on the author's own experience, this novel gives a startlingly fresh and intimate perspective on how western aid programs are failing Africa. It also shows, with blistering honesty, how one woman's life can be irrevocably changed by a sojourn in one of the most captivating and complex nations on earth.