At the start of Albert's enchanting third Beatrix Potter mystery set in England's Lake District (after 2005's The Tale of Holy How), Miss Potter discovers that her beloved Hill Top Farm is overrun with rats. In the nearby town of Far Sawrey, mild-mannered vicar Samuel Sackett also finds himself plagued with unwanted visitors: a cousin and his wife who have long overstayed their welcome. There are also rumors that a mysterious Mr. Richardson plans to build holiday villas on the shores of Lake Windermere, and he appears to be in league with Mrs. Kittredge, the beautiful new wife of the master of Raven Hall. Ridley Rattail, one of Hill Top Farm's resident rats, contrives to rid the farm of its unwanted rodents, but when his program backfires, he must seek a way to redeem the situation. Rich descriptions of the countryside and the imaginative rendering of the animal characters make this gentle tale a delight from start to finish. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
In this third installment in the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, the Edwardian-era cozy series from the author of the China Bayles mysteries, Miss Potter seals her reputation for untangling intrigues in her Lake District village. While she waylays the schemes of two swindlers and joins village children in a search for the area's legendary fairies, whimsical subplots (a series staple) reveal interactions among canny, talkative, and occasionally even well-dressed members of the animal community. Readers inclined to judge such elements twee in a book for grown-ups aren't likely to warm to this series, but those who--like Albert's heroine--champion the benefits of "dreaming, imagining, creating, improvising, and fancying" will find themselves happily absorbed, to the point of forgiving the awkward manner in which facts about the historical Potter are plunked into the fiction. Extensive character lists and recipes to rumble the stomachs of anglophiles (bubble and squeak, sticky buns) flesh out this amiably realized world, in which lapses in good feelings and right behavior are always passing anomalies. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.