Dr. Cronin tells the story of a young mans tribulations and his subsequent rise through boyhood to become a doctor. His hero is no Tom Brown by any means, nor is he Penrod by a long shot. At several points I thought that his hero was becoming somewhat Dickensian, but he managed to rescue his character each time. True to Britains great writers, and obviously their society in general, there is an undertone of inbreeding as cousins are ever attracted to one another. Told with a heart and stark realism, this short novel provides an interesting examination of rural Scotland in the early 1900s. Continue his story into adulthood in A Pocket Full of Rye.