THE TREMBLING HILLS by Phyllis A. Whitney


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The Quicksilver Pool (1955) set its story in Staten Island; this moves to San Francisco of 1906 and the earthquake here changes not only the city but the life of Sara Jerome and those about her. Her mother has kept secret all knowledge about Sara's father, Leland Bishop, is unhappy about leaving Chicago for San Francisco, and is terrified when Sara's uncontrollable curiosity turns up the fact that she is related to Miss Hester Varady, wealthy and, according to Sara's mother, monstrously wicked. Sara has learned too that she no longer loves Ritchie Temple, that it is Nick Renwick, engaged to Geneva Varady, who claims her whole heart, and, when the earthquake sends them to Miss Varady's house for refuge, she sees Ritchie get his start as an architect and win back Nick's sister. The little pieces of her mysterious ""mirror nightmare"" come together and Miss Varady's brutal treachery- to make sure Sara is to have Nick -- is the means of Geneva's death and of the truth about Sara's father and the dark scandals of Miss Varady's past. A woman's novel that should have a definite local market and which is grounded in the city's great and tragic event, this tells its story capably and sturdily.

Publisher: Appleton-Century-Crofts