Recalling her last, Firebell in the Night, this is again an elaborate, often exciting, drama of the Northerners' Civil War in upstate New York, the dissension and disaster it brought. In particular it is the story of Senator King and his family, Ranyard, the elder son, who shared his father's conviction that there should be no Civil War and fought the draft, and Dex, his cousin, once Ran's closest friend, who misconstrues Ran's highminded pacifism into Copperhead cowardice. It is also the story of Lacey, beautiful and bad, the much younger second wife of the Senator who, though denying her southern sympathies, places these first, seduces Ran, and Dex, and betrays them. Ran, joining a secret organization headed by Andrews, friend to Lacey, soon realizes that Andrews is using the organization as a cover for espionage and treason, and gets the proof at the cost of his younger brother's life. Full political, and military, detail gives this a reality beyond the melodrama- make it popular period reading in a good tradition.