This sequel to Squire Arden follows Edgar Arden into his new life, after he had discovered that he was not the legitimate heir to Arden Hall. He must leave in the past his sister Clare and his love Gussie. Even his surname has changed - to Earnshaw, that of an unknown long-dead father. And soon he must look for work.
This novel has new characters and new settings, but it will also revisit people from Edgar's past including Clare Arden, Gussie Thornleigh, and Arthur Arden. Several subplots may seem far-fetched even by Victorian standards - and this novel is not one of Mrs Oliphant's best. But it does have its moments, especially near the end when Edgar is finally moving towards a meaningful future.
Biographical and other notes
The quotation on the title page is from Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott.