In an area she has made her own, Margaret Widdemer places a story, framed by the years 1772-74, when England and America were driving towards war, with a fictional Sir Lucien Tynedale as central figure. He flees England and his Cumberland estates and the matrimonial designs of a co-ward, Jennifer, to America to sound out Colonial opinion for Lord North (and incidentally to return to his mother, his step-father and his own property near Saratoga). The new country, his new family, his half-sister Brigid, do much to counteract his English upbringing; the roots put down in his first years in America respond to meeting Shamanth, the Shawanese. Betrayed, then captured, his stoicism under Indian torture earns Indian respect and he is rescued by Sir William Johnson's son and becomes a part of Shamanth's tribe. There he persuades Delia, a white captive, to return with him to the white world, where he resumes his mission, seeking out the influential, and involving himself in the Boston ""Tea Party"". Then London once more- and the revelation of his bastardy; he is truly Shamanth's brother-releases him for marriage to Brigid and return to his proper home. Odd and unexpected bits of pre-Revolutionary happenings and research (an Indian civilization that communicates in French, English and Latin) sparks an interest in its subject and threads history into its fancier flourishes.