Devastated by the breakdown of her marriage, Allie flees to the one place her heart can seek comfort: Cornwall, where she hopes childhood memories of a holiday with her father will sustain her while she sorts out her plans for the future. But fate has other ideas, and she finds herself drawn into an almost obsessive friendship with a band of strange bedfellows led by Marsha, an intense, ageing hippy with a life force that at once comforts, stimulates and infuriates Allie. Her growing attraction to one of the men in the group, Adam, bewilders her as she discovers that nothing in life is what it seems, and the only constant is change. Little by little the layers of her past are painfully peeled away. Initially ruffled and confused, and later deeply hurt by what she considers multiple levels of betrayal, Allie once again chooses flight. She heads back to London, but finds that her life-complications only deepen - her husband begs her to come back to him, her estranged father arrives unannounced from France, her loopy mother proclaims yet another marriage, Adam turns up to take her back to Cornwall - and the hardest part is yet to come for them all. Finally, Allie realises that she must confront the secrets and lies of her past - and Marsha's - before she can face her own future.