Author: Sadie Jones
Hardcover: 272 pages (my version paperback ARE)
Published date: May 1, 2012
Publisher: Harper Collins
FTC: Received ARE to review for TLC Book Tours
I had so much fun reading Sadie Jones' new novel The Uninvited Guests. I took one look at the cover and knew that it would be perfect for my Downton Abbey-ish addiction. It definitely was!
With some apprehension, the Torrington family is about to celebrate the twentieth birthday of Emerald, the second of three children. Their housekeeper, Florence, plans an elaborate dinner for the family and a few close friends. Charlotte and her children—the romantically handsome and callow Clovis; nine-year old Imogen, known as Smudge, who plots a “Great Undertaking” for the evening; and Emerald herself—are disconsolate at the thought of losing Sterne, their beloved family home.
Originally purchased by Horace Torrington, Charlotte’s first husband and the children’s father, Sterne has become too expensive for the financially strapped family to maintain. Since Horace’s death and Charlotte’s remarriage to Edward Swift, the house remains an important link to the past, a symbol of the family’s position that is intertwined with their sense of identity.
As Edward sets off for Manchester in hopes of obtaining a loan, the rest of the family begins preparing for the dinner party. An evening unlike any other awaits them. Little can the Torringtons imagine, that more than just a few intimate friends are about to arrive at Sterne . . .
For some reason I went into this book thinking it was going to be some kind of murder mystery a la Agatha Christie. I think it is more like Downton Abbey mixed with Clue but without the murder(s) but still a ton of fun chaos and mystery.
I read someone's review and they said they didn't like the characters but man I absolutely loved them. My favorite had to be Emerald. For some reason she reminded me of Downton Abbey's Lady Mary -- in that she was a bit stuck up at the beginning but I ended up loving her character. (But I also pictured her wearing Lady Sybil's gown. Isn't it beautiful?)
|Lady Sybil's Outfit from this site|
Granted Clovis, the eldest boy and the mother, Charlotte are less attractive characters. But as the story progresses and the family goes through all the crazy things that happen that one night, I love that the "children" really do grow and mature a bit - maybe the mother too.
The "uninvited guests" part is, I'll admit, a bit bizarre but I loved that I was totally not expecting the story to go that way and I ended up really enjoying it. **I really don't want to spoil it at all for you and hope no one else's reviews spoil it either. You really have to go into the story and not know where it's going to take you.
By the way, I mentioned the Clue aspect above but without murders. There is definitely a mystery aspect to the story and there is a fun dinner scene that for some reason just made me think of Clue's classic dinner scene. Loved it.
By the way, notice the beautiful cover above with the blonde lady with the phone? I adore that cover but look what my ARE looks like:
Which cover do you like better?
Sadie’s Tour Stops
Tuesday, May 1st: “That’s Swell!”
Wednesday, May 2nd: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
Thursday, May 3rd: Jenny Loves to Read
Monday, May 7th: A Chick Who Reads
Tuesday, May 8th: Paperback Princess
Thursday, May 10th: Stiletto Storytime
Monday, May 14th: Broken Teepee
Tuesday, May 15th: Amused By Books
Wednesday, May 16th: Unabridged Chick
Thursday, May 17th: Picky Girl
Monday, May 21st: Life In Review
Tuesday, May 22nd: Wordsmithonia
Thursday, May 24th: Wandering Thoughts of a Scientific Housewife
Wednesday, May 30th: A Library of My Own
Thursday, May 31st: Chaotic Compendiums
Friday, June 1st: The House of the Seven Tails
Friday, June 8th: My Bookshelf