A quiet story of an English girl and her flowering in the midst of a farm family where she is surrounded by men. Willow comes to the household with her brother Charles when she is eight, and soon after, Aunt Clara runs off with the groom leaving her elderly housekeeper and her husband to care for the four boys and two cousins. At eighteen, Willow takes over the housekeeping for the family; she has a passionate but short romance with one brother whose destructive impulses she had fought as a child, but he soon tires of her, and she turns to another brother, Groom, whose unspoken love had strengthened her through the years. For he, like her, knows that love is not to be turned on and off, but radiates into life... The use of understatement here lends distance to the characters, while the book itself has an episodic pattern. But the undercurrents of life and death, love and hate, the beauty of the central character and quietude of the writing, is somehow reminscent of Precious Bane, and the writing has a literate distinction which will recommend this to a discerning rather than appreciable audience.