The many readers who took A Tree Grows in Brooklyn straight to their hearts can look forward to something similar in this first novel of an Armenian family in Massachusetts. For there is an admirable simplicity and a catching tenderness in this portrayal of Setrak Dinjyan, the expert shoe-stitcher who is constantly changing jobs because his pitiful wages are never enough to care for the needs of his family. And there is sympathy too for Leo, the eldest son, crippled on the day of his christening in an accident for which his father feels guilty. And there's Sarah, who stays late at school to add to the family income, and ten year old Varant who sings like an angel and hitches dangerous rides because he ""likes to move on wheels"", and little Sato who only wants a blue hat and patent leather shoes. Nor will you quickly forget Manoog the shopkeeper, the father's only confidante, as he serves his friend strong Raki, tangy olives and cheeses from the old country. And all will share in Setrak's triumph, at the end, when his fabulous skill at Tavloo (backgammon) brings them fortune from an unexpected quarter.... A book which for all its alien roots communicates an intimate reality and a warm emotion and which makes a direct appeal to a potentially wide audience.