Mr. Bontemps has written books for children with varying degrees of success, and ranging all the way from a rather thin retelling of the legendary Negro Sam Patch (1951) to the excellent Story of the Negro (1948). Now he tells another simple story that could happen to anyone. But as excitingly colored as it is with the atmosphere and music of the South, it has a mystic quality and meaning that makes us wonder whether more than a few children will appreciate it. Bubber, who lives with his grandfather in a small town up the river from New Orleans, is a very talented boy on the trumpet, but he has been warned against using it as a defense against loneliness. Bubber is convinced nevertheless of his desire to play, runs away to New Orleans where success and final disillusionment await him. At a rich man's ball, Bubber plays to the point of frenzy and wakes- to find himself alone and with the realization that he must find his comfort in people first and then only- music.