Alex D. is on the verge of just about everything and consumed by a restless, unanswered longing that rebels against jumping through the hoops of school. Staring down the tunnel to a mundane adulthood, he is appalled by the banality and overwhelming predictability of it all: teachers, parents, and above all his classmates - the seething masses of dutiful zombies and sistren of the Evervirgin Sorority. A bicycle bandit with a DeNiro smile, Alex sports a homemade buzzcut, ditches school to drink and trade stories with his posse of delinquents and rogues, and chases away the blues by assailing his eardrums with the Clash. He shares a brief friendship with the privileged, semi-degenerate Martino, who seems to have mastered the devil-may-care stance Alex covets - until he's busted for drugs. And then comes the sudden entrance of Aidi, who seems to instantly understand, complement, and challenge him. A hundred letters and conversations later, she is magnificent, amazing, irreplaceable ... and leaving for a year in America at the end of the summer.