That your boyfriend is an abusive man—such an awful accusation, you have to have an awful amount of courage to make it. You have to be sure. Except that when you’re abused, you aren’t sure of anything anymore…

Louisa is in an abusive relationship—but she doesn’t realise it yet. On an idyllic holiday in Barbados, her suppressed and secret past catches up with her. She falls in love with another man, and her world comes crashing down around her. The resulting pain, always before anaesthetised with alcohol, shows her a reality that can no longer be ignored.

“Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children. And then some shock treatment takes place, a person, a book, a song, and it awakens them and saves them from death. Some never awaken.” – Anais Nin

A guided tour of non-monogamy, A World in Us begins with Louisa and her husband Gilles, who love each other but whose marriage is going nowhere. They decide to explore polyamory, falling for another couple and trying to forge a life together as a quad. But they are challenged in ways they didn’t expect, and their experimentation forces them to accept a new understanding of themselves and each other.

This chronicle is followed by Louisa’s letters to her younger self. Sometimes love and good intention isn’t enough. Do you cut your losses and return to monogamy, or do you rise from the ashes? In this compilation of her previous works, The Husband Swap and Lessons in Love and Life to My Younger Self, Louisa offers candid insight into the polyamorous heart.”

“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” – Anais Nin

Vilified by the media for her outspoken non-monogamous lifestyle, Louisa Leontiades is, unbeknownst to the outside world, being defeated by mundanity. Four years of caring for toddlers and living in tracksuits has left her anxious, exhausted, and virtually celibate. Her partner, Morten, falls in love with Yasmin, whose family will never allow their relationship unless he leaves Louisa. Louisa falls for Janus, a terminal cancer patient looking for a mother for his children before he dies.

As Louisa and Morten seem poised to be torn apart, Louisa learns she has a potentially fatal tumour. Should she start a family with Janus (if she lives)? Would Yasmin make a good stepmother for her children (if she dies)? Necessary to Life takes an unflinching look at the importance of seizing the moment and the costs of following your heart.

“Dreams are necessary to life.” ― Anaïs Nin