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Synopsis

To his lifelong regret, Miles Bannister loses out when Evangeline Eliott the girl he loves marries his art school classmate Daniel Page. Miles’s millionaire father retaliates by making his son a director of The House of Eliott. From part-time illustrator, Miles and his father now became the new reality in the House. To please his father Miles proceeds to become both an engineer and a ruthless ‘rags’ tycoon. Evie and Daniel leave for Paris and the bursary Daniel was awarded. Both come to espouse the liberal causes of the early thirties. As Miles flirts with the Nazis dressing their wives in clothes Evie designed, the Page’s throw themselves into the international effort to save the Spanish Republic. Mr. Rich’s novel closes the story of The House of Eliott. Both up until the war and after, like a film noir, it is based on the real history of the nineteen thirties and the slow postwar recovery. Beatrice, her husband Jack, Evie and Daniel, Lord Alexander Montford, Penelope Maddox, Madge and Tilly, girls in the workroom, all play roles. They create one of the most endearing fashion houses in modern fiction as it survives ‘The Anxious Years.’

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