After her divorce, Ada Santorini needs a big change in her life, so she impulsively moves across the country to live in a houseboat community in Seattle. Her houseboat has been there for well over 50 years, and Ada discovers a trunk of personal belongings that belonged to the original owner, Penny. The author then takes us back to 1959, during the lonely year that Penny spent on Boat Street as the wife of an artist who preferred spending his time in the studio rather than with her.
Through this dual-period novel, we get to know Penny’s relationship with her neighbors over that lonely year, while Ada is meeting some of those same neighbors in 2008. Most of the owners are senior citizens now, but there is an attractive man on the next dock who Ada becomes involved with. There is a mystery as to what exactly happened to young Penny, who disappeared during the summer of ´59 and was believed drowned. None of the neighbors will talk about that night, so Ada may never find out the truth.
I have not yet read a Sarah Jio book that did not keep me interested in her well- developed storylines and characters. This book is written in the now-familiar past and present times, with a mystery for the woman in the present time to solve. Both of the women find love following much sadness, and the novel becomes a lesson in trusting and believing in oneself.