Winner of the Oregon Book Awards' H. L. Davis Award for Fiction.
Winner of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association's 2003 Book Awards.
Eleven stories take us from the Czech Republic to Alaska, from Siberia to West Texas, as they stake out territories straddling the border between life and death. In the title story the usual thoroughness of an insurance claims investigator spirals into obsession when Howard learns that a beautiful, drowned policyholder was a childhood neighbor he never knew. He is left uncentered, and his wife is convinced that he is having an affair.