Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Review: A Rather Lovely Inheritance by C.A. Belmond

American Penny Nichols works as an historical consultant on low budget movies when she gets a call telling her that her great aunt Penelope has died and left behind an inheritance. Thinking it wouldn't amount to much, Penny leaves her current movie and heads to London for the reading of the will. Her good looking cousin Jeremy meets her there and helps her through the surprise of a rather sizeable inheritance as well as helping her to navigate the tricky waters of the British side of the family. It isn't until Penny and Jeremy find their other cousin Rollo trying to steal the car left to Penny (she was gifted with the garage and its contents at great aunt Penelope's French home) that the madcap adventures of the novel really begin. Racing all over Europe to untangle the family tree and to prevent Rollo and his mother from succeeding in getting Jeremy disinherited, Penny and Jeremy uncover all sorts of mysteries about great aunt Penelope, her life, and the sometimes small ways in which World War II affected even those who didn't fight.

The characters are lovely and the plot clips along at a good rate after the reading of the will is over. Belmond does a nice job setting the scene and describing the family dynamics. While nothing tears families apart faster than money, and Rollo and his mother are actively working to have Jeremy disinherited, there is very little of the nastiness that usually surrounds these sorts of fights. And that is quite refreshing! This is a fun and frothy adventure full of light mystery and romance. There is a whiff of times gone by throughout the narrative and a gentility to the characters, even in the midst of heists and swindles. It is the first in a trilogy (at least so far), an amusing read that is delightful entertainment. I will happily be reading books two and three when I want a charming diversion.


  1. Sounds interesting! Your description reminds me of the books of one of my favorite British writers: Katie Fforde. I think you might like her books!

  2. This sounds like a lovely read! My library doesn't carry it, but I've added it to my Bookmooch wish list, so hopefully I'll get a chance to read it soon!

  3. I didn't expect the WWII angle, but that sounds right up my alley.

    I hope it's okay that I linked to your review on the Book Reviews: WWII page on War Through the Generations.

    Diary of an Eccentric


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