I was a natural failure from the start,"" says Margaret McConnell of her attempt to live the life of the religious--a perceptive person who valued her individuality and independence of mind, she found the call to obedience, the Great Silence, the absence of things, the ""strange worldless atmosphere"" of the convent excruciating. She endured through her novitiate and into the years of temporary profession, but suffered a nervous collapse in so doing, ultimately returned to the world she had left. Why she entered the convent, when to all appearances she was so ill-attuned to the life of the order, remains unsatisfactorily answered. But she describes the life with sensitivity tinged with bitterness against tile obduracy of the regime. Only a personal record of limited interest.