Not a first, but a first major effort, this is a more than life-sized fresco of Iowan farm life and the Frisian farmer, Pier Frixen, which combines a stallion strength, an animal realism, a directness in a work of large dimensions. Pier, naif and unlettered, independent and industrious, proud and stubborn, marries Nertha, of part Frisian heritage, Nertha- who with the years- becomes more and more ingrown, aloof, whom he never understood, and who bore him only one living son, miscarried two others and dies. With his land too Pier meets failure; disregarding the county agent, he overworks it, and learns too late that both land and wife needed gentler treatment. The last years sees a tragic mismarriage to slatternly Kais, bankruptcy and foreclosure, the withdrawal of his son into the world of science and the machine. A raw, robust saga of farming, of old ways against new, which succeeds in building sympathy for Pier whose simplicity and strength were to defeat him.