Nell's husband and son died in a freak accident only weeks before 9/11 hit NYC, where she resides, and the one-two punch rendered her a recluse. Ten years later, Anna, her last friend and confidante, is also the victim of an accident, and Nell ventures out from the city to join family and friends awaiting Anna's recovery. What no one knows is Nell promised Anna to protect her right to die, a role she never wanted, which is further complicated when she discovers secrets that call their friendship into question. Confronting Anna's defiant sister and husband, bolstering her adolescent children, and encountering unexpected allies, Nell is forced to examine the narratives we create about ourselves and the people we love, and the daunting choices we face when expectations crash into destiny.
Follow Nell's journey through grief as she faces the challenge of losing her personal lifeline and encounters secrets we keep from even those we hold most dear, as she also Anna's children and friends learn something of letting go. A novel about friendship, the force of destiny, and the way we deal with death in a culture that favors gains over losses and fears mortality.
An intimate story of an unusual bond between a pragmatist and Buddhist, potter and photographer, and one woman who documents memories versus one mired in memory. Who will come back to life?