Left in genteel poverty by the death of their father, the Fontayne siblings—Sarah, Philly, Christopher, and Tom—are shaken when their mother, loving but dizzy, takes a liking to Julian, a widowed neighbour with two children of his own. Sarah becomes infatuated with a thirty-something diplomat. Philly endures being painted by a dull local artist. Julian’s daughter Bronwen, a child prodigy who has already published a book, deals with the pressures of a literary life. And, in the end, a valiant attempt is made to revive the decaying, long-neglected ballroom of the family home for Sarah’s 18th birthday party. All against a backdrop of the ominous approach of World War II.
Evoking Diana Tutton’s Guard Your Daughters and Dodie Smith’s I Capture the Castle, Beneath the Visiting Moon is both a glittering, funny tale of romance and family life and a brilliant, haunting story of youthful hopes and heartbreaks in a world on the brink of devastating change.
Dean Street Press, 9781913054250