The Henderson family is caught in a cycle of alcoholism. Despite desperate attempts to escape their roots, Southgate’s characters come to discover that no matter how hard one may run, one’s fate is unavoidable. Josie Henderson is an ocean lover who is deeply fulfilled by her position as the only senior-level black scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. But in building this impressive life for herself, she has tried to shed the one thing she cannot: her family back in landlocked Cleveland. When Tick, her adored brother and childhood ally against their alcoholic father, arrives on her doorstep with his own addiction, Josie must face both her family’s secrets and her own fate.
Weaving four voices into a beautiful tapestry, Southgate charts the lives of the Hendersons from the parents’ first charmed meeting to Josie’s final realization thatthe ways of the human heart are more complex than anything you can see under a microscope.