Set in the 1830's in New Orleans,Benjamin January has returned home from France after the demise of his spouse. Regrettably he has forgotten how very diverse feelings toward blacks are in the Americas. Hambly describes the general social group structure that had developed from interracial relations with great understanding and detail. I was impressed by her descriptive images of New Orleans and Louisiana within this period. At times I could about sense as if I was walking the streets. The intrigue is well written involving dishonesty, and murder with a twist at the end.