The story begins with a family photograph taken on a windy day in 1938, and finds its way to the discovery of a companion picture fifty years later. At its heart is Emma Laura, a young girl entering womanhood as the country enters a world war. In Gallup, New Mexico, where her mother is a cafe cook, and Western movies are filmed in a nearby canyon, she meets a 20th Century Fox scriptwriter who tells her she could be in the movies. No wonder she isn't interested in the proposal of a local boy; California is only a train ride away. Less than a year later Emma Laura returns home from Hollywood pregnant. She is seventeen and her dream is dead. In its place is the daughter that took her mothers place in childbirth. That child is Lucy. Now 25 years into her marriage with Gordon, the central truth is that she has never recovered from her mother's death. There will be so much to decide, about her newly discovered father, and the price of opening up the past. About Gordon and the manner in which they will lay their sad marriage to rest. First, though, in the baby steps of someone just learning to walk, she reaches for her daughter.