This is a story about a mother's unhealthy relationship with her daughter and the mother's obsessive desire to do anything to gain love and acceptance from the daughter. Veda was a very self-centered and ungrateful daughter. She's the type of daughter who takes all the credit for her success but would blame her mother for her pitfalls. Her mother bent over backwards trying to please Veda but Veda was the daughter from hell. The book is a total family tragedy and a definite classic. James Cain is an excellent writer and I look forward to reading some of his other books.