2015 год. In 1848, a young Eskimo boy unwittingly guides white whalers to a pod of bowhead whales. All the whales are killed except one--Siku. For this act, the boy receives a curse of banishment. Through generations, this curse is handed down, making his descendants outcasts from his people. Siku returns year after year, in reality and dreams, seemingly to taunt each son or grandson. The curse is finally broken when a daughter recognizes and saves the whale by cutting it free of its entrapments. In turn, the whale leads her to a place where there is food and shelter and enables her survival. Told in alternating voices--the young Eskimos and the whale--the reader comes to see the interconnectedness of humans and the animals they depend on.