Major Pettigrew very English (if there could be a description as such) with immaculate values and views lives in an idyllic English village complete with village shop now run by Mrs Ali - effacing, wanting to fit in with the neighbourhood, never been quite accepted, cultured, pretty, educated and widowed. We have miscellaneous characters like the greedy son Roger, the religious bordering on fanatic nephew Abdul Wahid who is inheriting the property as he is the nephew, we have a separate love triangle of George and Amina and Abdul Wahid (nothing is as simple as it looks) and we have the hierarchy of the English village ranging from the Lord of the Manor and his daughter, to the rich American who is intent on making a fast buck (I would like to see this stereotype of Americans being brash with their money removed from books. It is not fair!), and we have a Vicar whom I did not like when he sided with the conservative rather than for what was right when it suited him.
A beautiful story, descriptive of an age and of the characters of a typical (what we think) an English retired Major of the Army should be like - loved the chivalry and politeness of this character along with his strong sense of values and of what is right is might. A love story which did not turn soppy. The book was also very insightful of the characters of people - how insular we all could be and all it needs is a slight provocation to get us all rattled.
Wonderful read and so right for this time of the year. I am still smiling.