Alice and Harry Haskins have moved to Sunnyside, an affluent beachside suburb, to finally embrace the encumbrances of middle age: family, responsibility, stability, debt. Harry is an English professor at the local college. Alice is a once successful ...
writer, trapped in writer's block. Alice and Harry's son, Joe, cannot read and worries too deeply about the world. Their daughter, Grace, is fuelled by an ambition unseemly in a child. Eleanor, their teenage neighbour and babysitter nurses her own grievances about the world she is growing up into and worships the elegance of the Haskins family over the fence. Sunnyside is the place where affluent, educated men and women buffer themselves against mortality, disaffection and boredom. Surrounded by big houses and swimming pools, cocktail parties and tennis tournaments, they coat their inner worlds in the saccharine pleasures of the suburbs. But when Alice and Harry's closest friends crash on the rocks of infidelity, the shock-waves reverberate through the neighbourhood. Alice and Harry face the big questions: how relationships camouflage the fault-lines of character, the vulnerabilities of families in the wake of emotional anarchy and the ever perplexing question of which is more compelling: passion or love?