"Hood's sixth novel is set in a small, toxic factory town in Rhode Island. The river is polluted, the air smells nasty, and everything and everyone is just a bit run down.
Josie, a woman nearing midlife who has let her looks go, has two feuding daughters 10 years apart in age, a philandering husband who no longer loves her, and a father being claimed inexorably by Alzheimer's. Josie tries to stave off impending disaster, but everything seems to slip from her grasp. She's brutally attacked by a car jacker, her long absent and consistently outrageous sister, Michaela, suddenly decides to come "home" and face her painful past, and the river, in an eerie act of empathy, floods for the first time in many years.
As emotions and waters rise, the characters find their own high ground, relationships sort themselves out accordingly, and Hood leaves us entertained, touched, and reassured."
From the back cover: Josie Jericho Hunter is a dedicated wife and mother who plans creative menus for her daughters' lunch boxes and the coming week's dinners while her husband is making love to her. She has just begun to feel that her seemingly perfect life in East Essex is on shaky ground when a random act of violence send her into an emotional tailspin. To further complicate matters, her estranged older sister, wild child Michaela, has come home to East Essex after a long absence--a reunion that forces both sisters to confront their feelings for each other and for their parents. As rebellious Michaela struggles with the internal and external forces that, years before, drove her from East Essex, Josie becomes infatuated with her sister's childhood sweetheart and must come to terms with the legacy of sisterly rivalry that her own daughters have inherited.