In this work Lever has succeeded in producing an elaborate plot, the mystery of which is so astutely veiled, that, although simple and natural enough, the reader finds himself at last quite taken by surprise.
e call for so much intrigue and plotting, that I vow to you I 'd as soon be a Carbonara or a Sanfedista as the wife of an aspiring middle-class Englishman.
But to return. The county would not have us--we were rich, and we were City folk, and they deemed it an unpardonable pretension in us to come down amongst them. They refused our invitations, and sent us none of their own. We split with them, contested the election against them, and got beaten. We spent unheard-of moneys, and bribed everybody that had not a vote for ten miles round. With universal suffrage, which I believe we promised them, we should have been at the head of the poll; but the freeholders were to a man opposed to us.
I am told that our opponents behaved ungenerously and unjustly--perhaps they did; at all events, the end of the contest left us without a single acquaintance, and we stood alone in our glory of beaten candidateship, after three months of unheard-of fatigue, and more meanness than I care to mention. The end of all w
Though not quite so weighty, Lever's amusing comedy of manners has elements of the humor and societal commentary that characterize Austen, Trollope and Wharton, with a touch of the puckishness of Dickens. The Bramleighs, a wealthy family of social-climbing "Cits," as high society would have called them, fall on hard times when their right to their estates is challenged. Each member of the family reacts differently from the extravagant second wife to the practical young daughter, as ruin and scandal faces them. There's nothing too deep here, but it's a fun read, with a mystery thrown in for good measure.