Summer parties

Carney looked around with satisfaction. Everything possible had been done to give the house party an auspicious start.

The house was immaculate and Carney’s bedroom was as fresh as the sweet peas in the dressing table. Isobel’s rack in the bathroom was a snowy drift of towels. Olga had polished the silver. She had roasted a ham and baked a pot of beans; she had made a moulded salad, two kinds of cookies and a cake….

The perfect start to a summer party, in Carney’s House Party by Maud Hart Lovelace.


Part of the reason Lovelace’s writing is so evocative of hot summer days and home comforts is that her books are based on her own childhood and adolescence:

The boys were scrubbed so their cheeks shone. Mrs Sibley had put on a fresh silk waist. Carney was proud, too, of her father, not only because he was so well groomed and handsome but because he talked so well. He had read the new novel, Queed, which Isobel had been reading on the train…


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