Norah O'Flaherty is eleven years old at the turn of the century when the new angled cable cars bring dissension into her close-knit family. For while her grandfather stubbornly endorses the use of horse-drawn carriages, - one of Norah's older brothers enthusiastically embraces the innovation which threatens to alter the entire character of San Francisco. Devoted to both her brother and her grandfather, Norah watches the painful clash between the two, a clash which is not resolved without considerable pain to both. Rita Shield's story richly portrays the flavor of a San Francisco family at points crucial to them and their city. A lively Gaelic background adds warmth and distinction to the lepiction of Norah and her family.