This delicate intercultural love story was written pseudonymously by a Tartar who fled first the Bolsheviks and then the Germans only to die among the Italian fascists. The scene is Baku in the Transcaucasus, a town where orientals and occidentals live compatibly, largely indifferent to their nominal Russian governors. Ali is a proud Mohammedan whose very civilized eastern upbringing and western education give him a breadth to equal his deep desert-warrior impulses; Nino, the Georgian Christian girl he has loved from childhood, is compassionate and giving but in full spirited possession of the soul which Ali's traditions (though not Ali) would deny her. Their love easily outweighs their difficulties so long as they stay in Baku; but when World War I erupts and they retreat to Persia it becomes apparent (and is later corroborated) that there is no other home for them. . . . One wants these strong and gracious characters to prevail and wishes their author might have.