This is the story of a small frightened man, Cole Rives, who didn't mind buttering up to old man Perrin if it meant a job -- and who was fertile soil for the old man's reactionary fanaticisms. It is the story, too, of Hal Robey, who had once found marriage to old man Parrin's daughter, Louise, the path of least resistance to security, but who had reached a point where he couldn't stomach being the old man's messenger boy. And finally, it is the story of how the old man tried to inject anti-semitism into a southern town where there was no ground for making it an issue. His anti-semitism was a sop to his own so-called Christian piety, and for once the issue failed to take fire, and the venture in establishing a resort hotel with ""restricted clientele"" was an abortive gesture. An unpalatable tale, with unlikable and unconvincing people against an unreal background. I found it dull reading.