THE LIGHT HEART by Elswyth Thane


Email this review


I've liked these stories of the Days and the Spragues, largely because I've begun to have the sort of friendly feeling for the family, in successive generations, that I have for the Whitecaks of Jalna. The last novel bridged the Atlantic, with two inter-marriages, so now the fourth in this Williamsburg Pentalogy, again is set partly in Williamsburg, partly in New York, partly in London (and briefly in central Europe). This time World War I provides a somewhat shadowy background, while England of two coronations- Edward VII and George V- spans the story, and provides shifting focus on custom and tradition. Once again it is a story of the Spragues and the Days, and now their English connections; Phoebe, cousin (and niece) of Cousin Sue is heading into a situation of the ""world well lost for love"". Cousin Sue finds a way to rescue her from a childlike devotion to ""poor Cousin Miles""- and sends her abroad, only to have her conscience block her acceptance of the inevitability of her headlong precipitation into love for Oliver- and he for her- despite his engagement to the jealous Maia. So Phoebe goes back to marry her Miles and finds she can't go through with it; but her decision comes too late. A career gives her security without happiness; a war takes her back to Europe, with intention to rescue Rosalind from her German Prince -- and again she finds in Oliver the same overwhelming love. At the close, both are freed- the situations are contrived, but the outcome is all to the good.

Pub Date: Feb. 7th, 1947
Publisher: Duell, Sloan & Pearce