The Snow Pasture
This novel is set in one of the industrial valleys of Monmouthshire. Its inhabitants – miners and tinplate workers – escape to the green mountains in their hours of leisure; long walks, gambling, fighting and whippet-coursing are their recreations. In this close little community Dr Robert Pindar with Evelyn, his wife, and their son Benjamin.
The Pindar family are not united. Robert Pindar's war experiences have shattered his natural optimism. Evelyn is bewildered by the isolation into which she feels he is withdrawing, and she detests the valley and its people. Their son Benjamin is headstrong and rather spoiled; he has formed a friendship with Clem Johns, a miner's son, for whom he is willing to make any sacrifice. The two boys, so different in temperament and training – bring about a crisis in their families. It is resolved by an unexpected train of circumstances in which the boy Clem – himself a reminder of the unlooked-for, the surprising variety of life – plays the leading part.
The subsidiary characters – Clem's father, an odd mixture of brutality and affection; Benjamin's eccentric spendthrift grandfather; Tim Hubbard, Robert's partner, whose besetting sin is gambling – all in their conduct and reactions have an effect upon the Pindar family and contribute to its final reunion.