A story become almost legendary, reappearing in various connections, is the tale of Kipling's fight with his brother-in-law, the fight that resulted in his leaving his Vermont home near Brattleboro. Until both principles were dead, the full story had not been told. Now Van de Water, himself living in Vermont (A Home In The Country), tells the story as told to him by Beatty Balestier, Kipling's brother-in-law. In the telling, one gets none too sympathetic a picture of Kipling, and one becomes quite fascinated with Balestier, wastrel and never-do-well and charmer. One learns that what Kipling terms the ""unfriendliness"" of the natives was their answer to his determination to be let alone. And one gets the feel of the countryside, the state he had chosen to adopt. An episode brought to life -- and delightfully so. It makes good reading for anyone interested in sidelights on a much disputed subject and personality.