This story begins with Maude's mother making preparations to marry Dr. Kennedy's in "the New England hills". Maude is brought along to the doctor's gloomy house, Laurel Hill, in Honeoye, near Canandaigua (NY) to live with his vain daughter, Nellie as well as his long-time servants John and Hannah. Soon Little Louis comes along. But all is not well. Louis' health is not good, nor is Matilda's. Published in 1860, this book is refreshingly readable for having been written over 150 years ago! Vivid characterizations and interesting descriptions season this read that moves right along.