Youthful William, eager to be like other midshipmen, is an appealing enough lad, with his natural boyish pranks, and his adolescent loves. He grows less attractive as he settles into the ways his brothers had laid down for him -- but Miss Leslie paints him in much brighter colors than others have done. And -- though she protests her case too much -- she shows him as a friend of the people, the first real democrat on the English throne, to his own amazement. He had fathered a likely tribe of children, their mother an actress of uneasy virtue. But his own wife, acquired in maturity, could give him no heir to the throne which was to go to the carefully guarded Drina (Victoria). A vivid picture of an era.