at I should do, papa.'
'Well, it would be awkward, certainly.'
'I should hardly think he would come to-day.'
'Because the wind blows so.'
'Wind! What ideas you have, Elfride! Who ever heard of wind stopping a man from doing his business? The idea of this toe of mine coming on so suddenly!...If he should come, you must send him up to me, I suppose, and then give him some food and put him to bed in some way. Dear me, what a nuisance all this is!'
'Must he have dinner?'
'Too heavy for a tired man at the end of a tedious journey.'
'Not substantial enough.'
'High tea, then? There is cold fowl, rabbit-pie, some pasties, and things of that kind.'
'Yes, high tea.'
'Must I pour out his tea, papa?'
'Of course; you are the mistress of the house.'
'What! sit there all the time with a stranger, just as if I knew him, and not anybody to introduce us?'
'Nonsense, child, about introducing; you know bet
A romantic intrigue involving one woman and a series of lovers set in the typical Thomas Hardy setting. This book is a great study of the English class structure. The young woman as well as her lovers are complex and flawed characters. The climactic ending is not a happy one but fitting. I enjoyed the experience. I would have given it a 5 except that some parts were not easy.