Bernie, a divorced mother of three, lives in a converted shed – albeit with a great view – in Byron Bay. She works part-time as a journalist for the local paper. Bernie has an amicable relationship with her ex-husband and strong female friendships. Her life is steady, normal, recognisable.
While writing her first novel, she gets in contact with an old friend from university. Jack is married, has two children, and has never forgotten Bernie. A tortuous, intimate, passionate – yet frustratingly sexless – affair follows, fuelled by the exchange of hundreds of confessional text messages and emails.
Jack's inability to be physically available to support Bernie becomes clear when her father dies and she is threatened by her neighbour. When Jack ends their relationship, Bernie is emotionally destroyed and wracked with guilt. She seeks solace in a string of increasingly dangerous and twisted sexual encounters. What begins as an innocent search for validation on internet dating sites leads – frighteningly quickly – to sexting, pornography, brief liaisons in seedy motels, group sex, and swingers' parties. She hides her new lifestyle from her family and friends and retreats into nameless, addictive sex.
Losing February describes, in sometimes disturbingly graphic detail, what happens when a strong, energetic, capable woman in her early 40s completely loses her sense of self and mistakes grief for punishment.