Jio (The Last Camellia, 2013, etc.) blends romance and mystery in a novel told from the alternating points of view of two women separated by decades but connected by place and circumstances.
After losing her beloved husband and daughter in an accident for which she blames herself, Ada Santorini seeks help from a grief counselor. During one session, she tells him she wants to move far away from New York, where she works as a travel magazine writer, in order to dig herself out of her pit of despair. He reminds her that grief lives inside, not outside, and gives her information about a friend who has a houseboat for rent on Lake Union in Seattle. In June 2008, she takes out a lease on the houseboat and begins to establish relationships with neighbors. She discovers that the houseboat was once the home of a woman named Penny, who left a trunk full of souvenirs from her life; enough to inspire Ada’s interest but not enough to completely enlighten Ada about Penny’s disappearance back in 1959, a subject the neighbors won’t discuss. Ada asks a friend back home who works for the NYPD to help her investigate the various people in Penny's life: husband, lover, a neighbor child. The author maintains a steady succession of questions, answers and more questions to create suspense.
Tragedy and redemption mix in Jio's latest treat for fans.