Indian Summer Author:John Knowles Cleet Kinsolving returns from the Second World War with no prospects, few plans, and a deep and so far thwarted ambition: to make the best of himself, to live life on his own terms. — After an idyllic time working around air-planes in Kansas, Cleet is drawn, with deep reluctance, back to his home town in Connecticut by an enormously rich and pow... more »erful family who have always magnetized everyone and everything around them. The Reardons live in a huge Victorian mansion, High Farms, and is there that the family power challenges Cleet. For the Reardons, led by the son and heir, Neil have always succeeded in twisting those around them to their own purposes: Cleet himself; Neil's wife, Georgia, bubling ovr the gaiety of riches she does not believe in; her sister Lynn, terrified of the Reardons and of her own awkwardness; their ne'er-do-well parents--winning, alcoholic Ken and loud, warm-hearted Genevieve--who come to High Farms for the great annual ball which is at the climax of the novel. Among the vast rooms and grounds of High Farms all these people struggle against a most common human dilemma: They live their lives out of season, like actors performing last week's play in front of this week's sets. In his struggle against the Reardon world, Cleet stakes everything he values on meeting the Reardon challenge.
John Knowles has written a novel which affirms his position as one of our best American novelists.