A fairytale for our times. Alva and Irva are indentical twin sisters. They live in the city of Entralla. Along with Gondal, Brobdingnag and the Emerald City, Entralla is not a place you are likely to have visited; only one guidebook to the place exists, despite its historic landmarks and the considerable civic pride of its inhabitants. Alva is by nature an explorer; she longs to travel the world. Irva is a recluse, for whom a step outside the house is an ordeal. But the twins belong together; they cannot survive without each other. Since childhood, the isolated twins have built fantastical cities of plasticine in an attempt to find a place for themselves in the world, real or imaginary. But it is when Irva finally refuses to leave the house at all that the major work of their lives begins. Alva, in an attempt to return Irva to life, brings the city of Entralla into their shared home; she wanders its streets, observing, taking notes, measuring, and reports her findings to Irva, who painstakingly constructs a miniature Entralla. In Alva and Irva Edward Carey takes the reader on an enchanting journey through a city of the imagination, and in the twins he has created mesmerizing and unforgettable heroines whose conflicting desires contain the seeds of both their destruction and their salvation. ALVA AND IRVA is about longing and belonging, about the worlds we inhabit and the worlds we contain, and about how distance, in the end, is purely a matter of perspective.