A glowing, pulsing romance of three generations in the city of New Orleans, with the recurrent pattern of the Carnival of Mardi Gras week as background. Estelle Lenoir, Queen of one of the new Carnival Krewes in the period when intensely family conscious Creoles held heads high and spurned the ranks of mere Americans; and her granddaughter and namesake, Stella, the men they loved and did not marry, and Stella's ugly duckling cousin, Patty Forestal, who dared to take the man she loved, these are the chief heroines, with Marie Coleste, Stelia's mother, as a somewhat shadowy figure of tragedy. Mrs. Koyes spins her story skillfully; in this she pulls all the stops for full bodied romance and she conveys a glamorous sense of the life of the city, that most colorful of all our cities. Here is an intensely social uppercrust picture, the French Quarter, the Garden District, the hush-hush of relations of New Orleans young blades and their octoroon mistresses, the problems of tainted blood, plantation life. She's done a searching loving bit of research -- and told a good tale.