It's 1969, and Judith "Denny" Denham has just begun an affair with Dr. Ernest Wright, a psychology professor at Wellspring University, who just happens to be her boss. Meanwhile, Ernest's wife, Nancy, has taken Denny under her wing as a four-hand piano partner and general confidante, although Denny can never seem to measure up to Anne, Nancy's best friend from back east, either in piano-playing skill or general grace. Ernest's eldest son has fled over the Canadian border to escape the draft, while his only daughter has embarked on a secret affair with her father's protege. The remaining son, Ben, is fifteen, and as delicate and insufferable as only a poetry-writing fifteen-year-old can be. That autumn, Denny crosses the freeway that separates Wellspring from its less affluent mirror image, Springwell, to spend Thanksgiving with the Wrights and their assortment of strays, including two honoured guests: the eagerly anticipated Anne and Anne's new husband, the novelist Jonah Boyd. Hilarious and scorching, by turns tender and tendentious, David Leavitt's first novel in four years is a tribute to the power of home, the lure of success, the mystery of originality, and, above all, the sisterhood of secretaries.