Norah Lofts has never been a favorite author of mine, however this book gave me pause. If there such a thing as straight, linear time travel, then this is it. After finishing this book I felt that I wanted to read it chapter by chapter, backwards.
Lofts' construction of her story is fascinating. She tells the tale, not so much of people, but of generations of people who all have one thing in common: a tavern that has passed through the family without a break. Lofts can skip a few years between chapters or a few hundred years, but she always somehow finds a way to tie the generations together. The memories fade, facts turn to folklore, and then turn to dust, but the commitment to the care of the tavern remains.
At first I thought she was trying to find a way to link together short vignettes to create a novel (something she has done before), but in this book she has carefully crafted an integrated whole.