As a child Eddie Burchill’s mother was evacuated out of London to the countryside during the War. She was placed with three eccentric sisters, the Blythes, where she lived in Milderhurst Castle in Kent.
Fifty years later, Edie’s mother receives a letter from the youngest Blythe, though does not share this with her family, having never previously discussed her childhood in Kent.
Edie ends up in Kent visiting Milderhurst Castle, slowly discovering a series of secrets about the Blythes, the Castle, and her mother.
This novel is in excess of 600 pages and is borderline depressing. Edie is not happy, her mother is not happy, and the Blythe sisters are certainly not happy. And neither was I.
I just have to reference a quote I found on a Goodreads which sums this book up beautifully, from Jeanette “Astute Crabbist” on 19th December, 2010.
Did you ever go to a Tupperware party where the hostess spent forever demonstrating all the gadgets in a dramatically effervescent voice? And at the end nobody bought anything? And there weren’t even any refreshments being served to make it worth having shown up? And you didn’t like any of the other people who came to the party?
This book is that party—all elaborate demonstration, no sale, no refreshment, and no one I care about.
I am thrilled to have waded through this novel if only to find Jeanette’s review.