Coming-of-age--overdone, high-strung, and heavy on the bucolic local color. Nick Cloud, a virginal 16 and son of the fabulous Cloud motor cars family, wakens on the Fourth of July in 1929 in the lyrical town of Arden, Ohio. He's in love with beauteous young Melissa, a vibrant high school girl, and he's also enamored of 30-year-old, dark-haired Phyllis Bellaman, the wife of Nick's good friend, Cy Bellaman. The only problem here, as Nick finds out this glorious Fourth, is that infertile Phyllis sleeps around--with just about everybody! She enjoys exposing herself to a 60-year-old handyman, has accommodated the town sheriff, and even Nick's late father Rex was her (first) lover--none of which has been known by husband Cy or innocent Nick. But on the night of July 3, Cy came home, found his best friend Henry fooling with Phyllis, and shot Henry dead while meaning to kill Phyllis. So now Cy's hiding out in a cave while the town vigilantes are looking for him, and Nick is confused. As part of his youthful deviltry, he and a friend are blowing up some decorative urns in the cemetery; but as part of growing up he's got to come to terms with Cy in his cave, with Phyllis (who wants to get him alone at night), and with Melissa, who is ready to render up her virginity in the woods. Boles can be an exciting writer, but this is an agonizing misfire and too folksy by half.