Jess, who has just finished university, has won a prestigious prize which gives her the opportunity of a year off. In meeting Kate the widow of the prize donor, she finds herself staying in a village in Devon for a while, where she meets a large number of connected people, and feels herself oddly at home.The elderly Rowena is surprisingly excited at the thought of meeting Jess, who turns out to look remarkably like her grandmother did when she was young... and it seems there may be another connection, too. Meanwhile there are marriage problems for Kate's son Guy and his wife Gemma, who is the daughter of Kate' best friend Cass... I always enjoy books by Marcia Willett, but sometimes find her huge cast of characters to be rather confusing. Most of the ones in this book are old friends from previous novels; I certainly recognised Kate and Cass, Guy and Gemma, and various others who recur with a new set of problems. But I've read the previous novels over several years and haven't re-read most of them; so there's no way I can keep them all in my head. And this book starts in a frustrating way; other than Jess's story, it seems to be a re-hash of parts of several other books, as different people think about incident - happy and sad - in their pasts.However, she does tell a good story, and I found myself quickly caught up in Jess's narrative at any rate, and also rooting for Guy and Gemma. I skimmed parts about boats or the navy - these books are set in a world far removed from my own - and tried to ignore the assumptions about boarding schools which always annoy me slightly. Towards the end it became rather more interesting and I found the ending nicely satisfying, so could almost give this three-and-a-half stars... but not quite.