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Hal JacobsIs it worse to lose your sister or your husband? That's the question Maryanne Stahl poses in The Opposite Shore (New American Library, $12.95 paperback) after a 40-some-thing woman discovers her husband and sister locked in a kiss on her husband's sailboat. Rather than confront William and Anna, Rose moves to a nearby island community with her teenage daughter and rebuilds her life around her emerging painting career.
In alternating chapters, Stahl, a native New Yorker who lives near Atlanta, shows the weight of days and weeks pressing on her characters as a result of their choices. William, an English professor in New Haven, must decide if he should leave everyone behind and accept a one-year post as visiting professor at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. Anna contemplates quitting her job at a nature center to crew on schooners sailing across the Atlantic.
Slowly, a sense of balance returns. And just as a stormy kiss shattered their relationships in the first place, a stormy sea brings everyone back together in an arrangement that no one could have foreseen.
— Journal-Constitution, September 7, 2003