An obsession with the color problem takes a new twist here in an incredible story of Aldebaran Flood, in 1930 a successful novelist, and her attempt to resurrect the dead ashes of an old love, dating back to the War and a sowing of wild oats in Paris. That her love was Lee, a jazz player who had run away from the issue somehow intensified her uncertainty. She must know whether the love was dead or sleeping before she married Orlando. Little she reckoned with what her investigations might reveal, as she pursued will the wisps of rumor during her American lecture tour. Then in South Carolina she learned the truth. Lee was a ""white Negro"" who had crossed the color line. And just what that might mean was highlighted in a melodramatic incident on the Rodriguez plantation, an incident involving the touch of the tar brush in the Rodriguez line -- a foreman who looked white -- a Ku Klux Klan affair -- violent death -- and escape to Europe, only to find answer in a dope joint in Paris. This will do nothing to enchance Miss Steen's reputation, and contributes little to the Flood saga.