by Pollyanna Porter

"Nothing is ever truly made right or rectified, though, is it? You can’t make right the wrong already done, can you?"

When Sara Scott begins an affair after a chance encounter, it sets off a chain of events that will change her life and those of many others in her small Vermont community. While meeting her lover, Sara witnesses a despicable act of sexual abuse that she soon learns involves a powerful man in her town and a struggling family that he terrorizes. She must then decide to expose her own affair, bear witness to what she saw, and set off a criminal investigation into the years-long abuse of three brothers. Her support of the young men gives them the strength to confront their abuser and get help, but it also fractures her own family. The story of her healing process in the present is told in alternating chapters with that of uncovering the abuse and her attempt to rectify it despite the cost to her own life.

This deep exploration of family and truth and one woman's reckoning with an ethical quandary is beautifully constructed and filled with profound insight into choices and consequences. The inner life of Sara is rich and fertile terrain that offers up complexity and wisdom about fulfillment in marriage and motherhood. Porter writes incisively about one woman's desire to do the right thing and eventually find her path when her life veers off course in unexpected ways. The past and present timelines flow seamlessly together, creating tension and authenticity along the way. Porter deftly explores the question of what price one is willing to pay to do the right thing. Ultimately, Sara will answer this question, altering her life forever and the ties that bind her to her family and community. With nuance and honesty, Porter develops a strong female protagonist with imperfections, independence, and the determination to right a horrific wrong.

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