Altogether a charming and fast-paced book that chronicles the fleeting love affairs and cynical love matches of the young generation in late-20s England — the smart and clever set with nothing but contempt for marriage and tradition on the one hand, and the more well-bred, romantic and value-driven sort on the other. Delafield takes as her thesis that the two types ought not to mix, no matter how strong such a first love may strike. Well the characters are enchantingly well-drawn to a point, but over 340 pages she drills down their habits and slang and temperaments too insistently and in ways that reveal much too little new about them for it not to lose some of its glow. But if you love the era and its types it's hard to see how it could fail to be anything but an enjoyable read. My idea of Delafield was that she would be a good deal wittier and more sardonic than this, which I hope will be borne out in her more famous works.
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