Ben Turnbull is a 66 year-old retired investment consultant living north of Boston in the year 2020. A recent war between the United States and China has thinned the population and brought social chaos. Nevertheless, Ben's life, traced by his journal entries over the course of the year, retains much of its accustomed comforts. Something of a science buff, he finds his personal history cuaght up in the dysjunctions and vagaries of the 'many universes'; his identity branches into variants extending back through history and ahead in the evolution of the universe, as both it and his own mortal, nature-shrouded existence move toward the end of time . . .