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‘I’d sooner read a new Barbara Pym than a new Jane Austen’ Philip Larkin

Wilmet Forsyth is well dressed, well looked after, suitably husbanded, good looking and fairly young – but very bored. Her husband Rodney, a handsome army major, is slightly balder and fatter than he once was. Wilmet would like to think she has changed rather less.

Her interest wanders to the nearby Anglo-catholic church, where at last she can neglect her comfortable household in the more serious-minded company of three unmarried priests, and, of course, Piers Longridge, a man of an unfathomably different character altogether.