Written in 1913, this hefty novel commences:  “I was an unwanted child – unwanted as a girl at all events.  Father Dan Donovan, our parish priest, has told me all about it.  I was born in October.  It had been raining heavily all day long.  The rain was beating hard against the front of our house and running in rivers down the window panes.  Towards four in the afternoon the wind rose and then the yellow leaves of the chestnuts in the long drive rustled noisily, and the sea, which is a mile away, moaned like a dog in pain.”