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f/. 

The  novel  is  set  among  the  wealthy  of  the  Northeast  in  the  USA  of  the  early 
1900's.  A  close  knit  group  of  about  ten  couples  in  high  society  visit  each  others 
homes  for  dance,  drink,  conversation  and  partying.  The  male  members  are  mostly 
affiliated  with  a  closely  held  conglomerate  controlling  the  sugar  refinery  industry. 
Robert  Kimberly  and  his  brother  Charles  are  the  top  executives.  Robert  Kimberly  is 
very  highly  respected  and  is  seen  as  the  leader;  unlike  most  of  the  group,  he  is  not 
married.  He  cares  for  his  very  decrepit  oldest  brother,  with  the  help  of  a  hired 
Catholic  monk.  Alice  McBirney  and  her  husband  have  recently  moved  from  the 
Midwest  to  join  the  group.  He  has  just  sold  his  refinery  to  the  Kimberlys,  and  is  now 
an  officer.  Robert  Kimberly  is  soon  very  attracted  to  Alice.  She  tries  to  avoid  any  such 
improprieties;  she  wants  him  only  as  a  friend. 

The  novel  has  some  serious  themes,  like  the  sanctity  of  marriage,  the  Catholic 
Church,  the  relationship  of  classes  in  society,  labor  vs.  management,  divorce,  etc. 
Robert  has  the  highest  of  values  in  most  regards,  but  falls  hopelessly  in  love  with 
Alice.  The  idea  of  adultery  is  a  horror  to  Alice,  though  her  marriage  is  an  unhappy 
one.  She  will  not  consider  divorce.  The  resolutions  in  the  story  are  not  happy  ones. 

^  ^  ^€Mih4  i 0:29:03 

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Cover  designed  by  Availle  with  an  image  from  the  book.  This  design  is  in  the  public  domain.