I have a very personal feeling about this book. It touches me and grants me the privilege of access to its romantic heroines inner life as she arrives at a post-Woodstock womanhood in Hoboken, no less. -Bob Fass, WBAI-FM Its Hoboken, New Jersey, 1987. The Bongos are breaking up, the Maxwell House factory fills the air with the scent of coffee, and favorite son Frank Sinatra still eats calamari at Leos Grandevous. Twenty-seven-year-old Madeline Boot has just returned to the city, determined to start a new life after a spiritual retreat gone awry. Madeline gets involved with David Guggenheim, the bassist of the up-and-coming band Shallow Grave. Swept up by Davids seductive lifestyle, Madeline seeks balance between her new relationship and her family life, which includes her upstairs neighbor Michael, a Columbia professor who translates Buddhist scriptures. Inspired by Jane Austens Emma, Tibetan Buddhism, and the unique charm of Hoboken, New Jersey, Madeline explores spiritual and material aspirations, and ultimately finds harmony between the two.