I'm not much of a fiction reader but I just finished Barbara Kingsolver's The Bean Trees and enjoyed it a lot. The story conveys what I keep saying, that life is all about relationships. And life is all about relationships because life is about experiencing love in its many forms, as well as through its lack and absence. The Bean Trees' metaphor for this realization is the wisteria vine, whose root system attracts rhizobia, small bugs that attract nitrogen to the roots and assure the wisteria's survival even in poor soil. Bug and wisteria live in a mutually beneficial and interdependent relationship. One cannot survive without the other.
We may think that we can go it alone, get off the grid and be self-sufficient, but nature is not like that. Nature is an entirely interdependent and mutually beneficent interrelational web of support that we humans are an integral part of. The more we care for each other, the more we enjoy love, life and happiness.
We go to restaurants every once in a while and enjoy the experience. But what we enjoy a whole lot more is having people over or going over to friends' homes and sharing good food and good conversation. It costs a whole lot less and it cultivates relationships. That's what it's all about.
Read here a previous post on nature's interdependence, piranhas and the eco-mind.