In a considerable improvement over her first story- Fairing Weather (1955) -- Elspeth Bragdon takes the problem of a boy who is a town charge and who gets himself into trouble because he feels rejected. The setting is Spruce Point, Maine, where Jud Lurvey lives with his guardian, Captain Ben, and has managed through the years to build up a reputation for being daring and rambunctious. Now he wants to build his own camp out on Nubbin Island and with the promise of help from Homer, a young fisherman, things look rosy. But then a girl butts in and takes Homer away from Jud and makes Jud mad enough to break Homer's windows. That does it. Later there is a serious fire in a barn and though Jud is the one to put it out he is also the one to be blamed- until Ladder, the town simpleton and an arson, finds his ""merits"" are being overlooked and confesses to having started the blaze. A story with tension and dramatic force made of its own elements.