Bahr is known for his skilful short stories, and this is his first novel. Little more than a still life, a caricature. There is no plot. It is an astute if unpleasant characterization of four people living in a helter-skelter way in a small mid-western town. Mr. Baldwin, avoiding work through his claim to partial blindness, Mrs. Baldwin, monstrously vain, childishly sensitive; their niece and her husband -- buffers in the set-up -- all a bit eccentric and neurotic. Ably done, but purposeless.