This might be called the biography of a town in the late twenties, a town somewhere -- probably -- in our Middle West. Though it starts with a murder trail, and has a thread of morbidness in the dire forebodings of the local ""witch"", the story is in no way a depressing one. The author cross sections a normal enough town; he centers his story around one family, that in the span of a few generations rises to riches from nothing, and descencs again, while the strength goes into a family they had spurned and driven forth. Essentially American, this pattern of a community, and a good story, well told, with many episodes that etch themselves sharply on memory, with characters and personalities that stand out vigorously. There is a certain ironic justice in the turn of the wheel, as the last of the dispossed Reynolds returns to the land of his forebears, and finds himself again a founder of a new line. The style is elitical, the plot at times confused, but the story emerges, clear cut.