Woodacre is a love story about two people perfectly wrong for each other. The novel is set in Marin County in the early seventies as a generation of people set out to reinvent themselves after the turbulent sixties. During this restless time of experimentation and social change, individuals and families were rocked, often torn apart, by the lure of freedom that came at a price.
The story alternates, chapter by chapter, between dual first person points of view. Mickey, a San Francisco fireman, struggles to make sense of his attraction to Jess McCarty, as he withdraws from his marriage. Jess settles into the simplicity of life in Woodacre with her daughter, Sarah, after a turbulent divorce. As obstacles fall away, Mickey and Jess begin a love affair where passion overrides reason.
The characters travel down a labyrinth of their own undoing against the backdrop of rural Marin. The raw beauty in the landscape mirrors their intense attraction and obscures their differences. Jess is unprepared for Mickey’s violent explosions of anger and jealousy, but she colludes with him by ignoring the warning signs in an effort to maintain the fragile balance of her life. Their love affair unravels when they can no longer evade the destructiveness of their relationship, and in a stunning climax, release one another from each other’s grasp.
The themes in Woodacre include: the nature of sexual passion; how place and time defines personality; the impact of social change; how cultural attitudes and beliefs affect women, men, and children.