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The saga of the Moorhouse clan continues in this by-pass dealing with the Hayburn branch, and particularly with young Robin, brought back from Vienna by Henry and Phoebe in the last book, Aunt Bel Much of the charm of the original trilogy, Red Plush, lay in the period trappings, the regional authenticity, the sense of intimate familiarity with the sprawling family. These elements are secondary here, when the scene shifts from Glasgow to the South of France, where Robin, threatened with tuberculosis, is sent to recuperate. His father, now Sir Henry, looks forward to Robin in the firm, shuts his eyes to Robin's desire to write. Away from family pressures, exposed to the Bohemian atmosphere of the Riviera, Robin discovers a new self, falls in love with an American girl, a writer ten years his senior, and ignores the purpose for which he was sent away in his feverish urge to write- and his discovery of surging emotions he had never suspected in himself. A few red herrings in the ""doings"" of the Moorhouses back in Scotland, and a sub plot which ties up some loose threads of former episodes, are not sufficient to recapture the sense of meeting again old acquaintances. The story limps to its inevitable ending, and the reader -- this one at any rate- doesn't particularly care. A disappointment on all mounts.

Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Young