The stories in this collection are about women of all ages and circumstances. The runaway of the title story is a young woman who is incapable of leaving her husband. In another, a country girl emerging into the larger world via a job in a resort hotel discovers in a single moment of insight the limits and lies of passion. Three stories concern the same woman--in the first, she escapes from teaching at a girls' school into a wild love affair; in the second, she returns with her child to the home of her parents, whose marriage she finally begins to examine; and in the last, her vanished child turns up caught in the grip of a religious cult. In these and other stories Alice Munro's understanding of the people about whom she writes makes their lives as real as our own.
Happily married, successful business owner Casey Marshall is content in her life, until a car accident breaks nearly every bone in her body and leaves her in a coma. Lying in the hospital, she is unable to see or communicate. But she can hear and she discovers that her friends aren’t the people she thought and that the accident may not have been so accidental after all.
For Noreen, Tess, and Rosie, walking the beach together every day has been everything. But after all those steps forward, the Wildwater Walking Club is doing some serious backsliding. Now they're dodging each other in the neighborhood, and Noreen is spending time working on pints of Ben & Jerry's instead of her romance with Rick, the also-lost boyfriend she met at career counseling. A new adventure might be just what they need. Their destination: Provence, the ultimate lavender trip. It turns into the trip of a lifetime, filled with Van Gogh and vineyards, wine and chocolate, plus lavender and more lavender. Join Noreen, Rosie, and Tess as they get back on track!