Will North’s new novel Water, Stone, Heart is the story of Andrew Stratton, an professor of architecture whose wife leaves him for another man. Looking for a change of pace and atmosphere following his divorce, Stratton decides to take a course in stone hedge-building in the small village of Bocastle in Cornwall, England. Here he finds himself enchanted by a child named Lee, who introduces him to the residents of the town as well as the natural beauty in the surrounding hills. He makes friends and is charmed by the local residents and finds himself immersed in the techniques
used to build with stone. During his stay, he meets Nicola, a woman who has also been hurt in the past and is hesitant to commit to the future. North uses a real event–a flood that devastated the town of Bocastle in 2004–to bring a conclusion to this story of loss and love. North’s ability to convey the sights and sounds of the countryside of Cornwall adds to the atmosphere of the novel.