A juxtaposition of events that leads not only to local drama but to the violence of conflicting issues, this returns a world famous statesman to his homeplace at a time when an election storm is about to break. Old Tobay, sick, weary and yet alive to the battle for power which he understands too well, finds that the murder of a vet by the local machine, and the question of might versus right complicate his homecoming as does the problem of his granddaughter, Martha, who, in looking for security, refuses to loose her hold on those on whom she depends. In the current moment it is the lawyer Akins who knows his loyalties and who learns his true strength -- in helping and renouncing Martha and in irrevocably aligning himself with the vets' eye-for-an-eye group. It is old Tobey's last stand for integrity, too, and that of the Negro, Bilox, along with the important decision of the murdered man's foreign wife. An angry but controlled novel of Virginia of today in the slash of the old order against the new, this has often a humor which is mordant, a perception which while warm is unsparing. Its microscopic detail is perhaps too enlarged for comfort -- or, at times, clarity.