With the subject of King Henry VIII's seizing the monasteries and convents for the background, the story of Jane Ingham, orphaned and ward of Dame Cecilia Wayte, Lady Prioress of Cokehill Priory, turns on her doubts of having a vocation and on her growing knowledge of her love for Sir John Acock, with estates near by. Acock, one of the group around young Queen Anne, is self banished from London for Anne's good, and when he is recalled, Jane is tormented by the nuns and harassed by Dame Cecilia who needs Jane's inheritance for her poor house. But with Thomas Cromwell's enforcement of the new order and Acock's release from prison, Jane is freed for the life she truly wants. The picture of the decay of the convent, of the seven professed sisters for whom security rather than God was important, of the affairs at court, of the effects of royal decrees on the countryside, is always alive and filled with the small details and insights that bring the past into reality. Mrs. Charques has again effected a superior blend of fact and fancy for the best type of historical fiction.