Two of widowed Mama Gaines' three children, Halcyon, Windust and Lucille, decide that the only solution to their chronic monetary difficulties (they owe every tradesman in town and Papa's funeral and plot still aren't paid for after two years) is to find Mama a steady, sobersided and well-healed husband. The Gaines cannot expect to find a man to match their loving and much loved father, but soon have practically every unattached male in Vernon City thinking romantic nothings about their still attractive Mama. Only Lucille, the youngest, who doesn't approve, sets up a counterplot to marry off Halcyon, who is twenty. Further complications are provided by Mama's sister, Aunt Libby, divorced from but still in love with her husband, a toper, and Halcyon's two matrimonial prospects. All turns out well, everyone reforms, and for once the meek inherit a pleasant portion of the earth. An occasionally hilarious though somewhat overdone entry into the Life with Father sweepstakes, this is a refreshing mosaic of small-town life and lives.