In 1880, housemaid Ada Curtis bore the first of several illegitimate children from her employer, the son of a once-grand family now obsessed with its own threadbare nobility. More than a century later, inspired by the stories, re-inventions, and half-truths in her family's past, Elizabeth Speller - Gerald and Ada's great-granddaughter - sets out to trace the criss-crossing lines of their history. As she herself recovered from a mental breakdown, she began to wonder if that history offered any explanation of what had happened in her own life: What made my grandmother mad? What made us mad? The search resulted in a tale bringing vividly to life the passions and hopes of four generations, amid tales of wealth inherited and lost, eccentricity, sexual indiscretion, and madness.
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Used availability for Elizabeth Speller's The Sunlight On the Garden
April 2006 : UK Hardback
April 2007 : UK Paperback
February 2012 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition