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Habits of the House

Habits of the House (Volume 1)

Fay Weldon; Read by Katherine Kellgren

Macmillan Audio

From the award-winning novelist and writer of Upstairs Downstairs, the launch of a brilliant new trilogy about what life was really like for masters and servants before the world of Downton Abbey

As the Season of 1899 comes to an end, the world is poised on the brink of profound, irrevocable change. The Earl of Dilberne is facing serious financial concerns. The ripple effects spread to everyone in the household: Lord Robert, who has gambled unwisely on the stock market and seeks a place in the Cabinet; his unmarried children, Arthur, who keeps a courtesan, and Rosina, who keeps a parrot in her bedroom; Lord Robert’s wife Isobel, who orders the affairs of the household in Belgrave Square; and Grace, the lady’s maid who orders the life of her mistress.

Lord Robert can see no financial relief to an already mortgaged estate, and, though the Season is over, his thoughts turn to securing a suitable wife (and dowry) for his son. The arrival on the London scene of Minnie, a beautiful Chicago heiress with a reputation to mend, seems the answer to all their prayers.

As the writer of the pilot episode of the original Upstairs, Downstairs—Fay Weldon brings a deserved reputation for magnificent storytelling. With wit and sympathy—and no small measure of mischief—Habits of the House plots the interplay of restraint and desire, manners and morals, reason and instinct.

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The House Awakes
 
 
6.58 a.m. Tuesday, 24th October 1899
IN LATE OCTOBER of the year 1899 a tall, thin, nervy young man ran up the broad stone steps that led to No. 17 Belgrave Square. He seemed agitated. He was without hat or cane, breathless, unattended by staff of any kind, wore office dress – other than that his waistcoat was bright yellow above smart striped stove-pipe trousers – and his moustache had lost its curl in the damp air of the early morning. He seemed both too well-dressed for the tradesman’s entrance at the back of the house, yet not quite
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  • Habits of the House by Fay Weldon Audiobook Excerpt

    Listen to an excerpt of Habits of the House, the new novel by Fay Weldon. Read by Katherine Kellgren.

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Praise for Habits of the House

“Settle in for a good, entertaining comedy of manners as Katherine Kellgren reads with all the appropriate accents.” – BookPage

 

“With a tony accent and wry humor, Katherine Kellgren narrates this story of an upper-class family on the verge of losing the life its members have always known…Written by the author of ‘Upstairs Downstairs,’ Habits of the House will delight fans of ‘Downton Abbey’ and those who enjoy dry wit coupled with excellent narration.” – AudioFile Magazine

 

“Narrator Kellgren creates distinct voices for all involved: servants, aristocracy and wealthy, title-seeing Americans.” – The Plain Dealer

 

“Habits of the House, an energetic story of the Dilberne family during a few months in 1899, is read at Gatling-gun speed and very effectively by Katherine Kellgren.” – The Winston-Salem Journal

 

“Narrator Katherine Kellgren creates an amazing variety of voices for the numerous characters both British and American…Kellgren captures the subtle humor and the satire in author Fay Weldon’s writing.” – Sound Commentary

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Fay Weldon; Read by Katherine Kellgren

  • FAY WELDON is a novelist, playwright, and screenwriter who, at the age of 16, lived in a grand London townhouse as the daughter of the housekeeper. In addition to winning a Writers' Guild Award for the pilot of Upstairs Downstairs, she is a Commander of the British Empire whose books include Praxis, shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction; The Heart of the Country, winner of the Los Angeles Times Fiction Prize; Worst Fears, shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel Award; and Wicked Women, which won the PEN/Macmillan Silver Pen Award. She lives in England.

  • Fay Weldon © Alex Bake BW
    Fay Weldon
  • Katherine Kellgren
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    Habits of the House

    Habits of the House

    Fay Weldon; Read by Katherine Kellgren

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    Macmillan Audio

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