Working title: Gone to Earth.
The idea for this book came to me when I read about an elderly female landowner – the last in a grand colonial line – whose final Will was so laced with conditions and restrictions that her huge, sprawling country estate couldn’t easily be sold after her death, preventing all the Russian Oligarchs that were lining up from getting their hands on it, which was precisely what she’d intended. I adore Herefordshire, a county for which the word fecundity was surely invented, so setting it there was a must, and as I wrote about the glorious Eardisford Hall and its unlikely new chatelaine, Kat Mason, I gratefully watched celebrities and tycoons snapping up the big estates there. When old and new worlds collide, as they so often do when money buys tradition, there’s always plenty of high drama.
Trivial fact: As usual I wrote too much and jam-packed this one with animals, so much so that my edit notes included a request to take out at least three horses, two dogs and a llama.