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The stories in A Different Harbor portray lives that have all the depth and wild weather of the Great Lakes. From a child who has lost his mother to a woman struggling to move on after a disastrous marriage, the characters in these stories flail for any chance to revive what they have lost. They collect fossils and watch old home videos; they retell their own most painful stories just for the sake of keeping them alive. Often, the best they can do is to acknowledge the latent beauty in loss itself—which just might be enough to carry them through.