I have read all Joanne Trollope's books (I think so) and this one did not disappoint me just like the others. The slight difference is that normally the setting is one of idyllic countryside which people tell me does exist. It is not a fantasy. The time the settings are a bit more urban - but it works beautifully.
The theme of the story is sudden bereavement on the one side, not planning for the future of not just yourself (you die and go away and thats that) but what about all whom you leave behind totally unprepared to face the worst and how this thoughtlessness and carelessness can disrupt families so much more than grief at an actual death.
Richie Rossiter dies suddenly of a heart attack leaving behind Chrissie his "wife" of 23 years along with three daughters. Only thing Chrissie is not really his wife. He has a wife of a long time ago and a grown up 32 year old son - the wife whom he never bothered to divorce although she would have given him one. This leaves Chrissie feeling not just bereaved but cheated and miserable. Her misery rubs off on the three children who are all caught up in this entire web not of their seeking.
Add to this a bequest of a Steinway grand piano, Richie's love which he had secretly bequested to his actual wife and you set the cat amongst the pigeons literally when the bombshell bursts. The taxes which have to be paid on inheritance (English tax laws do not take cognisance of 3 children and 23 years of living together) and the complicated mess that the Rossiter's find themselves in, form the story.
This is a good book - 320 pages - but an eye opener for all - particularly middle aged men.