Arthur and Joyce Richardson, a couple who had it all, thanks to a lifetime of unswerving control over every aspect of their lives, were stunned when Joyce became pregnant in her forties. Once the shock wore off, they swore to control-and keep control over-their child for as long as they could. Born into a perfectionist marriage with no room for the chaos of a child, Kate Richardson wants for nothing except love. She is a beautiful child, but her beauty fails to inspire the natural affection that children need. But from Ginny, her great aunt, Kate finally knows what it is to be wanted. At Ginny's, Kate discovers a world far greater than what she knew. Summers spent with her aunt are the happiest times of her childhood, but even there Kate finds it hard to escape her father's domineering ways. When Ginny dies, Kate mourns not only the loss of her beloved aunt but the loss of her only safe and supportive relationship. Once again under her father's control, a miserable Kate pursues the career he approves and marries the man he chooses. When Arthur dies, however, Kate flees to the only place she's ever loved-only to realize that unless she can escape the obsessive love that threatens her future, she will always be his to control.