"When Beatrice Westlake, an Australian, buys her sister-in-law's aristrocratic ancestral home in a small Sussex village, the villagers are concerned. When she moves in with her sister-in-law and two nephews, they are absolutely horrified.
"Gradually, the Australians are accepted and Plumbridge Hall becomes the centre of the neighbourhood's social life. But all comes unstuck when the Australians invite the villagers to that distinctly Australian institution - the picnic."
"There is wit, a lyric touch, good humour, even a sense of poetry, satire, undoubted entertainment and the contrast of values is deliberate, interesting and amusing." - Sean O'Faolin, John O'London's Weekly
"The Picnic is well told, witty, kindly, illuminating, completely successful, a book to be grateful for..." - Bulletin
"Is it twue that someone has taken Plumbwidge Hall?"
"Yes. Some colonials, so Major Hinde says."
"Oh! How disappointing!"
"Australians, I believe."
"Oh, dear, that's dweadful. I had hoped some nice people would buy it."
"No nice people have any money nowadays."
"No; I'm almost wuined myself." Mrs. Malaby, with a hand on which there gleamed an emerald ring, toyed conspiciously with her string of pearls, lest any one should take her statement too seriously.
From the Penguin paperback edition, 1985.
This edition was published with an introduction by Brenda Niall.
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