Willa Knox has inherited a decrepit house in Vineland, New Jersey. She and her family – college professor husband, his disabled father, their free-spirited daughter – move in after the magazine she writes for fails and the college where her husband had tenure closes. How, Willa wonders, can a couple do everything right and responsibly, and be destitute in middle age? Seeking grants to repair her house, Willa starts researching Vineland history, and discovers a noted female naturalist who lived next door. The novel moves back and forth between the stories of the two families who lived in the house in the 19th and 21st centuries and the challenges and changes they face. Entertaining and engaging.