She is Maggie Coyle: recently downsized bank employee and single mom of Jonathan. He is Joe Farlotte: out-of-work architect and jilted dad of Holly. When the two first meet, Joe is reluctant to abandon his "compulsive simplifying" to meet the risks of intimacy head-on, and Maggie is torn between the divergent pulls of feminism and her own desires and expectations.
But when Maggie rescues Holly from depression, and Joe becomes for Jonathan the dad he's never had, a dance as old as time is set in motion.
Told elliptically in a host of quirky voices, this is a candid exploration of life and love in the suburbs at the turn of the century.