Ralph Bates has the faculty of carrying one over into the spirit and atmosphere and mood of the place and the people of whom he is writing. Spain is his -- by proof of the identification he has evidenced in this and previous writing. Here is a collection of stories, two long ones, and the balance short, which give one first the spirit of old Spain, before and during the Revolution, the gay side, the sordid side, and then the Spain of today. One senses the life going on behind the Civil War, one sees into the homes and the hospitals and the villages caught in the chains of war, one's sympathies deepen as the tragedy of friends and families divided against each other intensifies the tragedy of a war torn country. His sympathies are with the loyalists, but it is not in any sense a propaganda book.