A skittish sabbatical for H.E. Bates, this is an invitation to share the ""perfick"" paradise of Pop Larkin who lives in a small house with a large family of six children, and an even larger wife, where behind the junk, the nettles and the rusting hovels at the back, there is a field of bluebells and the nightingales sing. Pop, a figure of expansive geniality and appetite, dominates his small domain, lives prodigally on the proceeds of fruit picking, and is the first to open his house to Cedric Charlton, from the office of the Inspector of Taxes, particularly because of his daughter Mariette- she is possibly pregnant. (This first section appeared in the S.E.P.- and its moral insouciance aroused some of the readership.) Mariette is a very seductive seventeen, and Charlton is quickly overcome- by Mariette, by the rich foods, and liquor; he is persuaded to stay on as they all go out to the fields to bring in the strawberries, and as she performs in a local gymkhana which ends with a blaze of champagne and fireworks and Charlton's proposal (no longer necessary).... For the few to cavil with the morals, there will be others to enjoy the carefree improvidence of this world- and it is seasonally suitable.