Another one of those competently written English novels which would probably make more satisfying reading if almost all of the characters involved were not quite so sick of themselves and their times. It concerns a coterie of highly cultivated Britishers who conceal all sorts of ugly, passionate urges under their sang froid. Among them is Andreas Amania, a power-drunk professor of art, who motivates the novel with his sadistic need to pulverize Alexander Rainham, an arthritic old musician caught in ""a hiatus between life and death"". Rainham, on the other hand, is attempting to find his protege, Arthur Godwin, whom he had rescued from a degraded life as a pub pianist and brought to the concert stage, and who had been weaned from Rainham by Amanis through invidious innuendo. And on the side, Amanis' chicanery involves his wife, Katherine, who rejects his sadistic behavior, becomes the mistress of a sterile and bewildered young writer, and brings all the issues here to a head... A sensitive- to decadent- exposure of ""the lighted cities of the brain""- for a limited market.