As we meet Aroon St. Charles, she has just served a lovely luncheon of delicate rabbit’s broth to her very elderly mother. Alas, the elder Mrs. St. Charles can’t abide even the scent of the stuff, and promptly keels over and dies. Not to let such a delicious treat go to waste, Aroon finishes it off. Well, now, that seems a little cold-blooded, no? Ah, but richly deserved.
Aroon was been born into the impoverished Irish gentry. They are down to slowly selling off the horses and avoiding the bills with much hand-waving and relying on the fading good will of the locals. Her brother is killed in an accident just as he is coming of age. But most disastrously, she is a large, big-boned and awkward girl, born into the flapper era. Not at all marriage material among her peers. And unfortunately, she has fallen in love with her late brother’s very dear friend, and girl, that’s just never going to happen, not that she has any clue why not. But she holds herself proud, based on her mother’s training of always good behavior, above all, until a disastrous attempt at attending a neighbor’s dinner dance completely does her in. She is not really a sympathetic character (remember the first paragraph?) but yet one can’t help feel that she deserves some sort of break for once in her life.
And then the ending happens. I didn’t expect that, and damn. Those last four pages are pure gold.