Very charming and appealing, this delicate-toned story of the South (Oklahoma) and Lucinda, eleven, through whose eyes the pattern unfolds. The story element is slim, the quality of the book lies in the setting and the characters -- and largely Lucinda. The scene is a small, dead town, living on its traditions of the past and particularly those of Castleton, a once great ancestral estate. Lucinda's mother can only see the decadence, the oppressive heat and stillness of the town but Lucinda, with a very self sufficient imagination, is captivated by the estate -- by the mystery of the two ladies, mother and daughter, living there alone in utter penury -- immolated before an old, and valuable, family portrait. There is also the young artist, Hardin, who returns to the town to bring art -- and liberalism -- to the community, and his collaborator, Lucinda's schoolteacher. Nice touches throughout, in the family servant, Mitt, in the faithful retainer guarding the Castleton portrait, etc. A fresh and sensitive book, for specially appreciative customers.