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Publisher's Summary

Summoned from his medical practice in China by a bevy of anxious aunts, Alain Roig returns to the rolling vineyards and gentle courtyards of his Catalonian home town. Family members, with vested interests in the ancestral property, have nominated him to prevent an impending marriage between his cold, ascetic cousin, Xavier, and Madeleine, a quiet, introspective village girl of unusual beauty.

As Alain seeks to understand his cousin's complex motivations for wooing the unhappy girl, he is slowly drawn into Xavier's dark crisis of faith, the well-worn pattern of the sleepy Catalan days, and the tight circle of village gossip that surrounds Madeleine.

©1953 Patrick O'Brian; (P)2008 Soundings

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