Very simply -- the way Jack and Mary tell it in alternating chapters -- this is what happened when Jack Willis, body-surfing, was knocked down by a big one, taken to the Southampton hospital where it seemed unlikely that he would ever move again. A quadriplegic. His attending doctor, Spinzia, a good man, was a little more sanguine than the imported neurosurgeon who claimed the damage was irreversible. After two operations and weeks spent in traction with tubes and tongs from here to there, Jack moved -- a toe, a leg, an ankle, the first three of 900 muscles. This covers the Willis' reciprocal hope and hopelessness (with both sets of parents contributing to each) until now the miracle is real -- Jack threw away his cane, Mary had that child. . . . One of the better books in the annals of personal physical disaster -- in other words a terrifying, drastic, involving experience.