A Perfect Revenge

A Novel

Annabel Dilke

St. Martin's Press

Download Image Annabel Dilke  A Perfect Revenge

Available Formats


From the author of The Inheritance and Secret Relations comes a Romeo and Juliet tale centering on a wonderful old English ancestral home that had once been a Cistercian abbey.

Almost a year on from the loss of their precious abbey, the Delancey family remains devastated. The abbey had been the uninterrupted home of Delanceys since the sixteenth century. To compound the insult, they have lost it to their archenemies: the family of their old gardener, Stanley Trafford---who was dismissed and evicted, along with his family, by Laura’s grandfather Edmund in 1947. But now Stanley’s son is a millionaire, intent on avenging his father. . . . Stanley Trafford and Edmund Delancey were boyhood friends. When both men married, just before the war, the couples became inseparable, with the two women---Hester and Effie---offering comfort to each other while their husbands fought in the same regiment. So what really happened on that fateful morning in 1947, to poison their friendship for nearly forty years? This magical story follows two warring families---the Traffords and the Delanceys---over the course of one devastating year, in which old secrets catch them up and turn everything upside down.

Connect with the Author

Sign Up for
Author Updates

Macmillan Newsletter

Sign up to receive information about new books, author events, and special offers.

Sign up now

Book Excerpts

Read an Excerpt

  Chapter OneIt isn’t normal to loathe your neighbours so intensely that it makes you ill or mad, Laura Delancey reminded herself with newly acquired maturity; and neither is it funny or admirable to spend all your time thinking up ways to torment them.‘And now you’re going home,’ observed the strange middleaged woman sitting opposite, who was still hoping for a conversation.Laura’s reaction was to stare down at the floor of the railway carriage, which was extraordinarily clean. The air smelt fresh and tobacco-free and the landscape streaming past the windows

Read the full excerpt



Praise for A Perfect Revenge

“Annabel Dilke’s sharp eye for the absurdities and cruelties of the British class system . . . a beautifully written and subtle story of secrets and lies.”---Elizabeth Buchan, author of Wives Behaving Badly and Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman


Praise for Secret Relations

“An unsentimental gem, an absorbing portrait of an upper-class English family beset by changes.”---The Boston Globe

“Dilke’s novel will appeal to those who love tales of British bloodlines.”---Booklist


Praise for The Inheritance

“The book is about making youthful mistakes that lose their reckless appeal over time, leaving those in middle age with more melancholic regrets than appealing memories. . . breathtaking.”---The Washington Post

“A dollhouse family come to life . . . The gods have stopped smiling, and the little dollhouse world is turned upside down. The fun is watching where everyone lands.”---The New York Times

Reviews from Goodreads


About the Author

Annabel Dilke

Annabel Dilke is a novelist, journalist, and screenwriter whose books have been shortlisted for numerous awards. She is the author of The Inheritance and Secret Relations. She lives in South London.

Annabel Dilke


Reading Guide

Organizing a Reading Group


Get the Guide

Download PDF

Tell Your Friends


Find More Books

Go to Website

Stay Updated

Sign Up

Buy the Book

Available Formats and Book Details

A Perfect Revenge
A Novel
Annabel Dilke

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
April 2008
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429944014
ISBN10: 1429944013
384 pages

From The Publisher

St. Martin's Press

Latest on Facebook

Latest on Twitter