A gentle, if static, novel about artistic isolation, from English painter Jones. Middle-aged Christina Hirst teaches painting to a varied group of townspeople in the Yorkshire village that she inhabits but doesn't really feel part of. Christina, a landscape painter fiercely serious about her own work, realizes (with some indignity) that to her provincial students she represents mere ""leisure."" Separated from her husband George for 10 years (""half her troubles had come about because George considered her too intense""), she now finds her lonely artistic journey sidetracked by her punky, pregnant daughter Heidi. The twist here is that Christina does not re-enter the world at novel's end. Although life goes on--she sells her paintings, receives an offer of marriage --finally it is her work, not humankind, that sustains her. An odd, unpredictable book, interesting mainly for Jones' lucid exposition of the artistic process.