Devastating insight has produced the most revealing picture of a young man in love with his idea of himself that modern literature has produced. In looking back, one realizes that the acid pen has been dipped in vitriol in the cause of exposing woman's frailties infinitely more than man's. Here is no type problem, no lay figure used to demonstrate a thesis, but flesh and blood characterization, of a youth who sees himself as something quite other than the actuality, and who teeters on the brink of disaster, always trying to rationalize what he ought to do with what he wants to do. Fate steps in and saves him from getting what he thought he wanted just at the moment when he discovers he doesn't really want it -- and he goes on, unregenerate, unchanged. The Europe of Americas seeking pleasure, at their own cost and at others, in Italy, Switzerland and Southern France, this is the background. Cozzens spins a good yarn; my one reservation lies in the fact that his central figure is so sharply drawn that his minor figures seem almost intangible in contrast.