Beauty is afraid to sleep—her dreams are haunted by the Shadow Lady who stalks and threatens her.
During her waking hours, Beauty's life is safe, safer than she wants it to be. Since her mother's death, her father has become so over-protective that he has locked away all the knives in the house. Her mother's death, the accident, is never discussed. Beauty has lost her desire to be an artist.
At school Beauty tries to be invisible to avoid the questions and innuendo that have arisen since her mother's death. But when a new student arrives, things begin to change. Luna is a free spirit, confident and exciting. She encourages and challenges Beauty to come out of her shell. Beauty finally admits to her attraction to Poe, a boy who lives a few doors away. Her artistic drive returns.
But as Beauty gains self-confidence, her nightmares become ever more terrifying, filled with dark images of blood and death. Beauty must now struggle to solve the riddle posed by her dreams: who is the Shadow Lady and what is the nature of her curse?