Thursday, September 26, 2013
Kate's Progress - Cynthia Harrod-Eagles
Kate finds the perfect property in Bursford near Taunton where she'd spent holidays with her grandparents when she was at school. Little's Cottage is rundown & neglected but the price is right & Kate has served as a willing helper to her builder father & thought she could do most of the work herself. She doesn't realise that she's stepped right into the middle of a family feud by buying the cottage which is part of the estate owned by the Blackmores. Ed & Jack Blackmore are working to keep the family estate going without much help from their flighty stepmother Camilla. Camilla has a life interest in the estate as their father has died & she sold the cottage to Kate to finance her shopping sprees. Ed is immediately hostile to Kate although charming playboy Jack is more willing to get to know her.
Kate enjoys getting to know the locals including her neighbours Kay & Darren & the locals at the pub. Jack is only too willing to take Kate out & distract her from her work but she finds herself drawn to silent, brooding Ed who works in London during the week & will do anything to keep the estate together. She also becomes friends with Jocasta, Ed & Jack's much younger half-sister & becomes involved with Camilla's circle of friends. London begins to seems very far away & as Kate becomes more involved with the Blackmores & the local community, she wonders if she really wants to sell the cottage when the renovations are finished.
Kate's Progress is a charming novel with an attractive heroine, two potential heroes & an involving plot. Kate's country idyll isn't without a snake or two in the grass. One person at least isn't happy to see her in the cottage & leaves anonymous messages to frighten her away. Then there's Addison, a gorgeous American who seems very close to Ed & is obviously a part of his London life that he's kept private. This is a lovely way to spend a Sunday afternoon.