This is an absorbing convert-story told in the first person by a gifted and sensitive Englishwoman of very great courage and humility. Led, in a troubled home, to despise religion, she experienced early neurotic alienation from family and friends and at 17 became the protege and mistress of a cynical physician who also introduced her to the morphia habit, a dependency which terrified her until well into middle life. Too intelligent to be self-deluded forever, she ran the gamut of bitter sophistication, selfish abuse of people, art as sublimation, limited psychoanalysis, growing horror to a point where she was very near despair and adness. By chance wandering forlorn in Ireland after World War II she was suddenly confronted by the goodness of the simple priest -and-peasantry of Aran Island. All at once defenses crumbled and she ""knew"" that Catholic she must be. Here as in most convert-stories the reader is left behind breathless at the miracle of grace. The movement from ""unfaith"" to faith remains in the book the in moment of mystery. She emerged sane and hopeful, her substantial conflict resolved. This is the whole book. It is an immensely human story. The writing is can rise to something close to brilliance and in the next line descend to a but this is a measure of the writer's narrative simplicity.