When the pathologically shy Kay falls for Noel, the guy with all the verbs, she's tempted to hide out in the Symphonians novel she's writing. The Symphonians are four brave and kind people – everything that friends should be – trying to save one of their own from an abusive husband. Kay would prefer to experience love through her novel, but seeks out Noel, in an innocent way of course. Their talks sustain her through the death of her abusive grandpa and the reign of
her authoritarian music teacher. Then Noel asks her out. She gets scared, she's not good enough, and backpedals right out of his life.
But when Carter falls in love with her, she surprises herself by going along for the ride. Kay soon discovers that she can't love Carter the way she loves Noel. When she tries to leave the relationship, Carter attempts suicide.
The Symphonians never turn their back on a friend. Yet they also believe that you must live your life, even if others don't want you to. Kay is determined now to break free and pursue what's hers – and not let anyone, especially herself, talk her out of the life she wants.
Is this one of those books where people in books are "in books"?? It's hard to maintain that as a workable trope (and please, no one wag jasper fforde at me--I'm the only person in the world that doesn't like those books, I know)
Is she confused about what's real? I am.