A sere, satiric novel of a rather limited, literary circle, none of whom hold any particular charm. The interest is centered on Harry Hutcliffe, a perennially popular novelist and chronic alcoholic. Hutcliffe, after years of seclusion in Boston, goes to New York to visit his mother, and to see his scarcely known son, Fergus. Prodded by his mother, he leaves for Europe with Fergus, with his missionary brother, and a milch goat. In Europe, he stays with a Polish general, ancien regime, the reported dead son of an old friend, tries to send him home, and eventually returns to America with his son, who is ready to start his first novel,- Flaw Dexter... There's a certain cleverness here, but directed at such a bizarre, bijou circle of eccentrics that there is little conviction -- and, for this reader anyhow, complete lack of interest.