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The only flaw in Dale's haunting debut is its reliance on the old chestnut that small town life is superior to the big-city crush. Adele Martin flees her mistakes in New York for the Pennsylvania cabin inherited from her long-estranged mother, Marge, who died six years earlier. Beatrice and Al Lopresti, Marge's friends and neighbors, befriend Adele, though Beatrice refuses to divulge Marge's secrets. Taught that love means indebtedness, Adele is confused by the attentions of woodworker Jay Westvelt. He prefers the simple life, wants stability and a family and doesn't identify as an artist despite his talent. Dale strongly communicates Adele's fears about the future and anger over the past through her relationships with vivid secondary characters such as the Loprestis' troubled teenage granddaughter, Kayleigh, as she puts the reader through a well-paced emotional wringer. (Jan.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.