A first novel by a contributor to the New Yorker, Harper's, etc. -- this is distinctively feminine and cultivates both the sensitive and the sensuous on a rather sophisticated level. In idealistic, somewhat tremulous terms, this follows the after-death activities of Olivia Baird, mother, mistress, wife and famous poet, as she watches over those with whom she had been most intimately involved, as her unseen presence continues its guidance. There is Max Aronson, her first husband, a radical, and Whitney, her second, proper and puritanical, whom she had married for stability, security. There are her two children, Philip and Auriol, Philip to whom she is closest, Auriol who takes on her step- father's materialistic standards but at the end acquires more genuine values; and particularly Brian, her editor, whom she loved but could not marry, who motivated her casual promiscuity, and was most deeply affected by Olivia, alive and dead. Gradually, as all resolve their lives, Olivia is released and the final transmutation takes place...For women- but not all women.