I did not read White Hawthorne, to which this is a sequel, but found that in the main this stands on its own merit, with occasional references to the previous book clarified as you go along. It is the story of Maris, child companion to Mary Tudor, lady-in-waiting to Elizabeth. A dramatic story, in which the struggle of the Catholic element for survival against alien forces is a predominant factor. Original in conception and execution. Sometimes confused and obscure, but on the whole interesting if somewhat mannered.