• Seven months before the novel begins, Penn Cage's wife passes away.
• On a trip to Disney, Penn's daughter "sees" her mother everywhere. On this trip, Penn decides to return to his hometown to build a new life for himself and his daughter.
• When Penn calls his parents, they are thrilled that Penn and Annie will be moving back to Natchez. However, on the phone call, Penn senses that something is wrong, but his mother will not tell him what is wrong.
• As Penn flies home, he reflects on the last few months with his wife. When Sarah's pain was unbearable, Penn's father told Penn to take her home from the hospital. Dr. Cage provided pain medication in order to keep Sarah comfortable until the end.
• When the end was near, Sarah asked for her father-in-law. Although Penn was not in the room, he suspects that his...
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