Racial pride and repudiation are the central themes in this bewitching novel of parallel lives that tragically intersect. Perched in his lovely home on a Caribbean island, Valerian Street, a wealthy retired businessman, savors the good life in the company of his younger wife, Margaret, his loyal servants Ondine and Sydney, and their beautiful, sophisticated niece, Jade, for whom Valerian has been a financial and emotional mentor. Preparations for the Christmas holiday are underway in this tropical setting, and the days take on a slow, lazy, decadent rhythm until they are disrupted by the sudden appearance of Son, a fugitive who has been using the house as a hiding place.Over the course of several days, Son confronts each of the members of the household, questioning relationships that have been taken for granted, and stirring up feelings of resentment as well as secrets, in effect shattering the fragile balance of the family. In the midst of this turmoil Son and Jade fall passionately in love, escape to New York, and then travel south to Son's hometown in Florida. Son's yearning to reconnect with his family roots clashes with Jade's willful rejection of the black way of life, and the couple must come to terms with their conflicting identities and their immense mutual attraction.Writing for the New York Times Book Review, John Irving hailed Morrison's fourth novel as, "deeply perceptive, returning risk and mischief to the American novel."Morrison, Toni is the author of 'Tar Baby', published 1987 under ISBN 9780452264793 and ISBN 0452264790.