During World War II, Honor Carmichael and her two young children are uprooted to Linfield, to join Honor's husband Colin, a dapper, small-town doctor stationed at the military hospital. She is visited by her sister Claudia, whose fiancé, Andrew, waits to be invalided out of the Army. Whilst Andrew dismisses himself as 'damaged goods', Colin becomes absorbed by the petty feuds and power games of uniformed life - most particularly with the arrival of Captain Herriot, a commando, and the C.O.'s current favourite. Apparently peripheral to this 'male pirouetting' Honor and Claudia are nevertheless deeply affected by this war - for its threat to notions of masculinity forces both women to reassess the roles they re always played. First published in 1945, this exploration of the crushing psychological effects of war is as relevant now as ever. This edition carries a new foreword by Sir Jonathan Miller C.B.E., the author's son.