Filth (Failed in London, Try Hong Kong) is a successful lawyer when he marries Elisabeth in Hong Kong soon after the war. Reserved, immaculate, and courteous, Filth finds it hard to demonstrate his emotions.
But Elisabeth is different - a free spirit. She was brought up in the Japanese internment camps, which killed both her parents but left her with a lust for survival and an affinity with the Far East. No wonder she is attracted to Filth's hated rival at the bar - the brash, forceful Veneering. Veneering has a Chinese wife and an adored son - and no difficulty whatsoever in demonstrating his emotions....
How Elisabeth turns into Betty and whether she remains loyal to stolid Filth or is swept up by caddish Veneering makes for a pause-resisting plot in a perfect novel which is full of surprises and revelations as well as the humour and eccentricities for which Jane Gardam's writing is famous.
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