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The Breached Wall (Wheels of Fortune) Hardcover – 14 Nov 2007


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (14 Nov. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752860720
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752860725
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 2.6 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,323,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Sinister and avaricious forces are at work behind the pious smile . . . gripping!" --"Daily Telegraph"

Book Description

The third novel in a historical series set in Devon in the early 20th century, following the fortunes of a large aristocratic family before, during and after the First World War ¿

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Sissel M. Østdahl on 12 Nov. 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Breached Wall is the third in a trilogy about two families before, during and after World War I, the aristocratic Cresswells and the family of successfull businessman Stan Eldrigde.

After the first two books (The Broken Gate, The Heart's Citadel), The Breached Wall starts in spring 1915 at the beginning of World War I. Part of Cresswell Manor, the Cresswell family home in Devon, has been made into a reconvalescent home for injured soldiers, who are tended to by female volunteers and nurses. It's yet early days but slowly the seriousness of the war becomes apparent. The many young men who are enlisted, seemingly only for training in order to protect England against "The Huns", are more and more often shipped to the front, leaving the women to carry the burdens at home.

Against the background of the war, the aristocracy, particularly its females, continue their lives seemingly undisturbed in their fine homes. Tended to by their servants, and keeping up the ever important "etiquette", they cling to a world which, unbeknowst to most of them, is about to disappear. After the Victorian and Edwardian areas, World War I does not only wipe out a whole generation of young men, it also changes the lifestyle of the English upper classes forever.

It is fascinating to read how Anita Burgh captures the essence of "Old England". The aristocracy, the wealthy but socially unacceptable pursuers of trade - and the poor servants and workers with menial skills. The difference between the living conditions of the upper and lower classes is huge. Yet, the working classes take as much pride in their stature as the privileged aristocracy. A trait which has always been very English and which exists even today.

Anita Burgh goes into every detail of daily life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Wendy McFarlane on 3 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This trilogy begins with the aristocratic, filthy rich Cresswells hovering around the bed of old Mortimer as he lays dying.The extended family cant wait to get their hands on his fortune, all except Hannah, his daughter who will sincerely morn him. The story then follows the family as they fight and squabble and grasp whatever they can,consumed by their desire for money and power. When Stanislav von Ehrlich moves into a neighbouring mansion, a self- made millionaire, a feud breaks out involving each and everyone of the Cresswells with repercussions that will follow them far into the future. The Hearts Citadel is book two and the third, which was my personal favorite, The Breached Wall, brings you into the first world war and the impact that has on the family, their neighbours and the nearby village. The trilogy might seem a little heavy initially but the superb writing skills of Anita Burgh and the variety of characters and their storylines will have you captivated. It is wonderfully moving,sharply witty throughout drawing the reader through to the final chapters, desperate to know the fate of their favorite characters. Once again I had not read any of this authors work before I picked these books up at our church fair, but after reading them, I made sure I read everything else she has written- and wasnt disappointed.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
Excellent English family saga 21 Mar. 2009
By Sissel M. Østdahl - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Breached Wall is the third in a trilogy about two families before, during and after World War I, the aristocrate Cresswells and the family of successfull businessman Stan Eldridge.

After the first two boks (The Broken Gate, The Heart's Citadel), The Breached Wall starts in spring 1915 at the beginning of World War I. Part of Cresswell Manor, the Cresswell family home i Devon, has been made into a reconvalescent home for injured soldiers, who are tended to by female volunteers and nurses. It's yet early days but slowly the seriousness of the war becomes apparent. The many young men who are enlisted, seemingly only for training in order to protect England against "The Huns", are more and more often shipped to the front, leaving the women to carry the burdens at home.

Against the background of the war, the aristocracy, particularly its females, continue their lives seemingly undisturbed in their fine homes. Tended to by their servants, and keeping up the ever important "etiquette", they cling to a world which, unbeknowst to most of them, is about to disappear. After the Victorian and Edwardian areas, World War I does not only wipe out a whole generation of young men, it also changes the lifestyle of the English upper classes forever.

It is fascinating to read how Anita Burgh captures the essence of "Old England". The aristocracy, the wealthy but socially unacceptable pursuers of trade - and the poor - servants and workers with menial skills. The difference between the living conditions of the upper and lower classes is huge. Yet, the working classes take as much pride in their stature as the privileged aristocracy. A trait which has always been very English, and which exists even today.

Anita Burgh goes into every detail of daily life. The way people think, dress, talk. She manages the somewhat stilted speech of the aristocracy as easily as the simple, yet distinct, straightforward and grammatically lacking language of the servants.

The all over drama in the book is the war and its effect on society as a whole. The lives of the people at Cresswell Manor and the nearby village are changed forever. There are tragedies and hardship and at the same time happiness found in ways that would have been unthinkable before the war. The various characters are strong and very much alive. The pompeous butler, the high tempered bustling cook secretly dreaming of love, and the timid, and sometimes obnoxious, young maids. The Lord of the Manor, Mortie is a kind and peace-loving man struggling in the shadow of lady Coral, difficult, hysterical and snobbish in the extreme. They are all there and love does indeed blossom among the gentry as well as in the kitchen and the servants' quarters!

In spite of the ravages of the war, there is a fine sense of humour throughout the book. The friendship between old hypocondriac lady Penelope Cresswell whom everybody fear, and lovely young Rowan, newly married to lady Cresswell's grandson Morts, is one of the highlights. Rowan is not a suitable wife for yong Morts, as a former maid at Cresswell Manor whose father Alf is the family's chaffeur. However, when Rowan manages to "tame" the family matriarch lady Penelope, it causes quite a bit of disturbance both "upstairs" and "downstairs".

Anita Burgh has written a fine family saga about life, war and love which is at the same time entertaining and an important literary picture of a special time in English history.

After World War I the old order of society was gone forever. But all over England magnificent castles and manors still remind us of a time when satin clad ladies fainted prettily, and their "sal volatile"!
WW1 drama 20 Feb. 2008
By Beverley Strong - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book is the third in a family saga and I should probably enjoy it even more if I had read the first two in the series. That being said, it was still a good WW1 family story, involving an aristocratic family and the families of their estate workers. Former maid, Rowan, has married the son of the Creswell family, much to the horror and disastisfaction of both families, the Creswells because of the disgrace of their son and heir marrying a servant and Rowan's own family who feel that she's gotten above herself and her proper station in life. The estate workers show themselves to be even more snobbish than their employers! The Manor has been converted into a convalescent home for wounded officers, with many of the estate girls, including Rowan, working long and hard hours as orderlies. Problems which would be known to readers of the first two books are eventually sorted out or else come to a horrifying climax. I enjoyed this as an individual read for its' descriptions of life above and below stairs in 1915, but would undoubtedly appreciated it more had I read the first two books.
Sequel to books I'd read and wanted to know what happened next 29 Jun. 2013
By Helen Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Unable to find here in Oz and was delighted by everything to do with aquiring this book on line. Very satisfied
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