This is the best book Doris Leslie has done since her delightful Full Flavour, and in its compactness and vividness, perhaps a better book than that which seemed a trifle sprawly and lush. Into the frame of September 1940, -- the scene a block in which one house has been completely destroyed while its neighbors stand, -- the characters, curious, passers by, air raid wardens, and a frail little old lady who lingers after the others go -- is set the story of the inhabitants of the wrecked house two generations ago, and the life that filled its stage. Into those pages the story teller has crammed the essence of Victoria's social backdrop, the modes and moods and morals that made up society with all its contradictions and extremes. She has created, too, the family, most of them as foils for Jenny, problem child of a brief mistaken marriage, who is too bright a being to be utterly crushed beneath the dictates of family and society, and who ""shows a pair of heels"" when the stable door is open. There is a romance, with its dash of tragedy -- and an ending that has its mead of happiness. A good tale, vigorous in the telling, in the period Doris Leslie knows best.