Avery goes back to an era when the social distance between the Titled Family in the Great House and the village locals was vast, and only Ellen ""Carroty"" Timms would be bold enough to sneak a look at the appointments made for Queen Victoria's royal visit. . . and to learn from observation of the Queen herself the shocking answer to the girls' eternal argument over whether ""ladies"" actually have legs. The anecdote (it could hardly be called a novel) unwinds with none of the pellmell allusions that limit Avery's older fictions to literary-minded readers; however, a reminder of how risque the word ""leg"" then was might sharpen its impact. A brisk view of a time when everything was different except the prevailing awe of celebrities and schoolchildren's heated speculation about the nature of adults.