This is a treatment of a triangular love story but with qualities which remove it far from the usual run. Most striking is the figure of Hamel, unorthodox minister of a small French Protestant community. Not only is he sophisticated and highly cultivated but he is also possessed of a powerful sexual magnetism, a quality Amelia Edwards leaves in no doubt. When he falls in love with the young and innocent Marguerite, he is brought into striking contrast with the accepted suitor; Charles, a man of inflexible rectitude but, initially at least, little appeal. The progress of their rivalry for Marguerite's favour draws on the resources, intellectual and emotional of both of them, till it issues in the final dramatic climax. The book is written with humour, passion and acute insight as the story leads into a variety of scenes and moods.