A NovelBook - 2003
1945. On the death of his father, Sydney, Lord Otterton finds himself heir to a crumbling country mansion, Cranfield. Despite the fact that his sinister mother has appropriated most of the family funds, the new Lord Otterton manages to persuade his wife and three children to move into the decaying house and set about restoring it to its former glory.
To aid him in this task, he recruits Annie Jerrold, a faithful family servant, to be the new housekeeper. She is soon joined by a cast of weird and wonderful characters - a drunken butler, a malevolent French governess and a pair of bizarre lodgers with a rather dubious past. Added to this is an elderly Polish historian, a romantic researching the Whig aristocracy who finds himself involved in a much more intriguing plot on the discovery of some hidden family letters.