With exceptional acumen, the publishers liken this novel to Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath for its true-to-Hard Times, Depression Texas backdrop and then delicately drift past the fact of its lubricity, while referring to the essence of old Erskine Caldwell rising from its pages. Miller (Days of Wine and Roses--story-to-screenplay plugged by popular song) is unquestionably gifted and before his story of fifteen-year-old Laddy Buck is over, he has drawn some potentially powerful tragi-comic figures. Laddy, who can't handle his youthful sexuality, works for bed-and-board-in-the-barn of a middle aged widower with a teen-aged daughter, Polly. She's an angel to her Daddy but her elective at a Baptist summer retreat has been sex. Unfortunately the Farmer's Daughter dirty joke is soon taken seriously. Laddy stops relieving his sex urges with a small heifer (training procedures carefully stated) and turns to Polly. By the close this assumes a symbolic weight neither the plot nor the characters are strong enough to bear. Too much, and with talent too.