The story of a family and their life on a farm in Wisconsin in 1906, permeated with a deep-rooted love of the land and a man's futile attempt to make the land his own by keeping his children there. Old Abel had gone West and developed for himself and his descendants the finest farm in the county, but he was spending his last years fighting to make farmers and farmers' wives out of his children in the face of his wife's determination to educate them for the professions. A wise but kindly man, Abel succeeds in saving two of his seven children; he is no match for scheming, ambitious Marie. This is a first novel, slow-paced, with wispy threads of plot, colorless characters who spend their time bickering or posing as models of morality. All in all, a pedestrian, amateurish handling of a mighty dull story.