If there was ever one woman who knew what was important, that woman was Molly Bell Redwine. From childhood, Molly was taught by her charismatic, demanding mother that "family is everything." But in what seems like an instant, Molly discovers that family can change without warning. Her husband of more than twenty years leaves her for a younger woman, her domineering mother dies, and her Atlanta clan scatters to the four winds. In a heartbeat Molly is set adrift. Devasting by her crumbling world, Molly takes refuge with a friend on Martha's Vineyard where she tries to come to terms with who she really is. After the summer season, Molly decides to stay on in this very different world, renting a small cottage on a remote up-island pond. As Molly's stay up island widens the distance between her and her old life in Atlanta, she lets go of her outworn notions of family and begins to become part of a strange -- and very real -- new family. As the long Vineyard winter closes in, she braces herself for the search for renewal, identity, and strength, until the healing spring finally comes.