Opalina is a ghost cat,""a filmy, diaphanous being from another world made up of the finest grade of atmosphere, a V.I.P. or Very Important Presence."" Curled up on the easy chair in the panelled playroom, she recites the events of her eight lives (the ninth is now). There was Saul Trumbull, the dishonest brother; foolish Aunt Selina and her phony Baronet; the two lonely children and the thieving poacher; Emily Cumberland and her strict governess; Pelley and Patrick and the friendly hermit: the seven cousins and their prissy Southern visitor; Miss Pankey and her haunted boarding house--seven stories set in the past (without antique atmosphere), related to each other by the old house and a certain continuity of family ties, but mostly by the artfully meddling cat. Seven generations of interesting people (the fourth life was dull) lightly touched, slightly tetched by the feline supernatural--an entertaining set.