Shirburn really isn’t into Christmas – all that jingly
tinsly presenty stuff makes him feel queasy. He’d prefer
to spend it alone watching trashy TV with his cat. But there’s
an unwritten law that elderly people are not allowed to be left
alone at Christmas, especially if they live in a vast old mansion
that could be a gold-mine in the right hands – and William’s
relative are very keen to ensure that Haseley House does end up
in the right hands!
Watlington intends to ignore Christmas altogether. But widows
aren’t allowed to spend Christmas alone either and it sounds
as if William might need her support. Frances, the nanny, was
hoping for a break from spoilt little Tobias and his dreary parents,
but now she finds they’re off to stay with his eccentric
grandfather in some spooky old house in the Cotswolds.
Hilary possibly be starting to have feelings for another man?
Will Frances overcome the snobbery that threatens to separate
her from Daniel? And whose name is William going to put on the
will-form that they’re all so keen for him to complete?
This particular family Christmas is going to change everybody’s
‘Packed with delightful, unforgettable, eccentric characters
and written with humour and deep sensitivity.’
of laughs and life-changing events…a terrific read.’
Nottingham Evening Post
‘A highly entertaining story full of plot twists and extremely
sharp observations about human nature.’
Profile : Jane Gordon Cumming
Gordon-Cumming spent the first three years of her life on a Thames
barge in a creek in Kent. She was an early reader, and when they
moved to a ‘real’ house, used to make up stories to
entertain her sister (now herself a best-selling author) based loosely
on the teachers at their South Kensington school.
eventually settled in Wimbledon, in a house with a turret overlooking
the All England Club, and Jane attended the High School, envying
her sister’s much more exciting, if less academic, performing
arts school. She read Classics at Bedford College, London, but was
more interested in writing and performing satirical sketches and
was after moving to Oxfordshire in 1975 that Jane began to publish
short stories, and in 1982 she and her mother became founder members
of the still flourishing Oxford Writers Group. She began a D.Phil.
on landscape history, but discovered she’d rather save her
creative energy for fiction. She and her husband were both 40 when
they met in 1990, and they ran Easter revision courses together
for thirteen years, before deciding it would be less stressful to
renovate houses. They work as volunteers with Oxford Archaeology,
organise local community activities, and Jane sings in two choirs,
leaving little time for their canal boat.
main influences are Wodehouse, Saki, Richmal Crompton, Arthur Ransome
and Georgette Heyer, as reflected in this, her first published novel.
has her own website: www.janegordoncumming.co.uk