Hidden desires, long-held secrets, and the sacrifices people make for family are at the heart of this powerful first novel by the popular Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist.
“A moving, unforgettable story about time, progress, and how the mistakes of one generation get repeated or repaired by the next.”—J. Courtney Sullivan, New York Times bestselling author of Saints for All Occasions
1957, Clayton Valley, Ohio. Ellie has the best grades in her class. Her dream is to go to nursing school and marry Brick McGinty. A basketball star, Brick has the chance to escape his abusive father and become the first person in his blue-collar family to attend college. But when Ellie learns that she is pregnant, everything changes. Just as Brick and Ellie revise their plans and build a family, a knock on the front door threatens to destroy their lives.
The evolution of women’s lives spanning the second half of the twentieth century is at the center of this beautiful novel that richly portrays how much people know—and pretend not to know—about the secrets at the heart of a town, and a family.