This book is short listed for a Giller prize. The main character is an older woman who is involved in a car accident with another vehicule. From the back cover: "Absorbed in her own failings, Clara Purdy crashes her life into a sharp left turn, taking the young family in the other car along with her. When bruises on the mother, Lorraine, prove to be late-stage cancer, Clara—against all habit and comfort—moves the three children and their terrible grandmother into her own house." She becomes a surrogate mother to the children which as the novel progresses gives her life a new richness and meaning. It is fleeting however as the mother of the children eventually recovers and takes back her children.
The idea for this cover came from a wall in our house where our kids marked their heights from an early age. I am sure the same wall can be found in any house with children. In the case of the wall markings on the cover there is only one or two entries, as it were, because the children were not there long enough. Her experience echoes that of any parent. Your children pass through your life and then they are gone, leaving behind only remnants of their presence.