Julian Green's first novel in some years deals with the problem of the homosexual, suggests rather than states his alienation in a society which isolates and repudiates him. In a rather dreary small French town, the disagreable members of the Vasseur household have taken in Jean- the ""transgressor""- a poor relative, and Hedwige, an orphan although they have given them nothing but the necessities. Hedwige, an innocent, falls in love at sight with a Gaston Dolange only to later learn- through the warning words of others and finally Jean- that he is incapable of returning her affection. Only when Jean goes to Naples, to take his life and write the letter which will enlighten her further, does she realize the nature of the relationship between Jean and Gaston and she too finds a release from her unhappiness in death.... The torment of these two is transcribed with a certain exaltation- but it remains remote and to an extent unreal.