Perhaps the simplest way to describe this book is to let Miss Stein explain it herself, as she does in her epilogue. "This is an effort to show the way anybody could feel these years. It is a perfectly ordinary couple living an ordinary life and having ordinary conversations and really not suffering personally from everything that is happening but over them, all over them is the shadow of two men, and then the shadow of one of the two men gets bigger and then blows away and there is no other. There is nothing historical about this book except the state of mind."...I assure you it was a great relief a great relief a great relief to know it was as simple as all that. Also I must confess that what the introduction terms the "reader's octave of attention" in my own case is inadequate to the reading of Gertrude Stein....The book is news in that the title piece was her last completed work, and five novelettes written between 1931 and 1936 are also included. The publication of this is a part of a larger project,- the Yale Edition of the Unpublished Writings of Gertrude Stein. Intellectual snob appeal.