The sadness and the emotional problems his wife's death bring to Mr. Madison and his two sons, Bruce II, and Robby 7 are wonderfully treated in a story with the steady, sensitive realism and humor that have come to be Jerrold Beim's trademark. For the Madisons- now only three. It is the story of their first months alone in the fall after their summer with grandparents. As the ache recedes, new problems come up. Their first housekeeper Mrs. Logan, is a good cook but she's bothered by the boys' rowdyism- normal as it is. Across the street, young Frankie and Stewie are troublemakers, for both their parents are at work all day. Mr. Madison himself starts thinking about remarrying. But as crises come and go, ""Dad"" and his boys face matters squarely, by themselves and with each other until Bruce, who is most openly hurt and often longs for his mother, proves himself in a bad blizzard and gains a new sense of responsibility. No black and white issues here-except, those of human understanding and a strong heart- but an honest look at life as it is.