REVIEW ✓ The Passing Bells

REVIEW The Passing Bells

REVIEW ✓ The Passing Bells ✓ Before there was Downton Abbey there was Abingdon PryoryThe guns of August are rumbling throughout Europe in the summer of 1914 but war has not yet touched Abingdon Pryory Here at the grand home of the Greville family the parties dances and romances play on Alexandra Greville embarks on her debutante season while brotheTante season while brother Charles remains hopelessly in love with the beautiful untitled Lydia Foxe knowing that his father the Earl of Stan will never approve of the match Downstairs the new servant Ivy struggles to adjust to the routines of the well oiled household staff as the arrival of Ame. I know a lot of people love this book but it just wasn't for me I found it rather slow and choppy and the characters cardboard I really didn't care what happened to them and when its WW1 and people might die and that's your reaction well there's really no point in continuingBut because I absolutely looooove the cover art theres sound reasoning for you I fully intended to slog through it regardless but the third F bomb sealed it for me and for those who care the profanity is moderately strong throughout D H B S C GD so the F bombs were just the icing on the cakeI made it to page 226

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Before there was Downton Abbey there was Abingdon PryoryThe guns of August are rumbling throughout Europe in the summer of 1914 but war has not yet touched Abingdon Pryory Here at the grand home of the Greville family the parties dances and romances play on Alexandra Greville embarks on her debu. I love a good mystery I just didn’t know that I would be so personally engaged in one for over thirty yearsIn 1980 a read a book about an aristocratic English family during WWI that I absolutely adored I was so enthusiastic about it that I promptly loaned it to my best friend who never thought of it again until about a year later when I asked for it back She had no idea where my copy was I was devastated Unfortunately I had forgotten to write down the title or author I could only remember that bell was in the titleDecades passed and the book never left my list of “to find titles” When Internet search engines and online used book stores became available to me I searched again to no avail Last month I was perusing the new release table at Barnes Noble and a book title jumped out at me The Passing Bells sounded vaguely familiar so I read the back description and checked the copyright date “Originally published in 1978” I stood and stared at the cover in stunned silence I had found it again It was a book miracleI immediately download a copy to my NOOK and commenced reading After a long and unyielding uest I wondered if time had romanticized my memory Had The Passing Bells become my Holy Book GrailThe summer of 1914 will mark the last days of a privileged way of life for many English aristocrats and the working class who served them Political unrest is looming on the continent but at Abingdon Pryory the palatial grand manor house of the Greville family in Surrey the pleasures of the ruling class continue as parties dances and romances are in full swing The lord of the manor Anthony Greville 9th earl of Stan rides his favorite hunter Jupiter through his vast estate while his wife Hanna Rilke Greville Countess Stan plans the debut season in London of their beautiful young daughter Alexandria and worries about her eldest son Charles whose studies at Cambridge and determination to marry Lydia Foxe a wealthy local girl with no family connections are foremost on her mind Up for a weekend in the country are family friends Captain Fenton Wood Lacy of the Coldstream Guards hard up for cash and seeking a bride and the eccentric wife of the Maruees of Dexford and her dowdy youngest daughter Winifred hoping to spark a romance with the heir Interestingly Hanna’s American nephew Martin Rilke a young journalist from Chicago arrives for a summer holiday and we see this truly English family from a new perspectiveDownstairs there is an army of servants maintaining the ancient estate and the lives of their upstairs employer in grand style A new maid Ivy Thaxton is learning the ropes in the hierarchy of the servant class while chauffeur Jamie Ross tinkers with Rolls Royce engines and dreams of submitting patents of his designsThe tug and pull of the family dynamics soon expands to a wider field with the outbreak of WWI We travel to northern France with Captain Wood Lacy with his battalion and Martin Rilke as a newspaper reporter and witness the chaotic beginnings of the war and the devastating losses at Ypres At home the Greville’s neighbor wealthy businessman Archie Foxe uses his food empire and knowledge of distribution to aid the war effort becoming even wealthier As all the young men are enlisted for King and Country and the young women are employed in the cities the staff at Abingdon Pryory dwindles down to a skeleton crew The ladies do their part and daughter Alexandria and housemaid Ivy enlist in the women’s nursing unitsThe narrative covers between 1914 1920 and we are witness to warfare with the soldier Charles Greville and reporter Martin Rilke who witness the massive military blunders and tragic loss of

Phillip Rock Û 1 REVIEW

The Passing BellsRican cousin Martin Rilke a Chicago newspaperman causes a stirBut ultimately the Great War will not be denied as what begins for the high bred Grevilles as a glorious adventure soon takes its toll shattering the household's tranuillity crumbling class barriers and bringing its myriad horrors hom. First in a trilogy set in England just before and during World War I depicting an aristocratic family and those below stairs who serve themhttpperfectretortblogspotcom201Readers seeking other Downton Abbey like books can check out my list here