jane duc is a woman wanting release. her husband, clever, has a relentless illness that has worn them both out and stretched her beyond capacity. they retreat to the family cottage, and jane finds solace in the forest and river. but not enough. circumstances can’t be rectified; grief cannot be contained. her children and friends stand by in bewildered vigilance as she withdraws into a world they don’t know and can’t reach.
there is a bit of jane in all of us. when life seems to give us more than we can bear, we seek places of retreat, and disappear into them. jane finds such places and invents others we could never have imagined, and in her final act, shows us the edges of endurance.
what is often ordinary and old hat in fiction becomes fresh and enlightening in this novel: prose, drama, and poetry blend; storytelling structures break and reform; tangible and intangible worlds separate and collide as we follow jane into dying again . . . and again.