Tizzie moves from London to the grand house of Roven Mere where her mother is the new cook. She longs to meet the daughter of the house, a girl her own age who has been away for many years with her family. Their homecoming is continually awaited, but never seems to happen, despite the many extravagant preparations. At last, and quite unexpectedly, the mystery is solved.
I liked this unusual riddle of a story – even though its premise is quite preposterous – it’s like a dream, a strange glimpse of a lost time, anachronistic and wholly unbelievable, but charming and warm as relationships develop.
The many small illustrations are in a variety of styles – naturalistic flowers in pen and wash, wood-cut style, silhouettes, splattery ink drawings – each of which worked though I found the combination incoherent. They did however match the nicely titled chapters – The Wobbly Stile; The Dripping Trees – which entice us through the book.