This is the story of a woman's life written with the kind of candor which often reaches the higher notes of catharsis-confessional and since it is full of both, more than most, it. cannot help but fail to encroach upon your sympathies. Margaret Parton was the only child, both loved and resented, of radical-intellectual-writing parents in a favored circle which included Sinclair Lewis and Clarence Darrow. It was not too long before she made her own place on the Herald Tribune where she spent the twelve best professional years of her life (second to Maggie Higgins) including two in Asia where she met and married Eric and had their child, Lem, before she left him. This was all preceded by an early affair and abortion but still more important, the short-term but lifetime-lasting meeting with a man she could not marry. She returned to the U.S. to bring up Lem alone, contend with an increasingly difficult mother, go to the Ladies' Home Journal which she loathed, married a man who died unexpectedly and left her with further problems (both money and Lem, by this time understandably unadjusted), and finally went through a 45-day vigil in the anticipation of Leto's death (leukemia), accomplished, as someone else said, with ""a style,beyond' courage."" Even where her prose is better lighted than it should be with some of those dreadful words -- ""delicious"" and ""delightful"" and even ""darling Dr. W. Norman Brown"" (legacy of the L.H.J.?) it probably will remain unnoticed by the readership this should reach and touch, say that of Jessamyn West or Madeleine L'Engle.