Joanna Trollope has written a series of novels exploring the effects of unexpected crisis on middle-class lives. A clergyman’s wife braves her husband’s anger to stack shelves in the local supermarket. A happily married woman takes a lesbian lover. A farmer commits suicide after his brother’s wife dies of cancer. Each of these events acts as a catalyst for change, but, as when casting a stone into a pool of water, it is impossible to predict quite how far the ripples will spread.