Thursday, June 25, 2009

Thrumpton Hall: A Memoir of Life in My Father's House

Thrumpton Hall: A Memoir of Life in My Father's House
Miranda Seymour
Harper, Jul 2009, $24.95
ISBN: 9780061466564

In 1944, twenty-one year old George FitzRoy Seymour ecstatically bought the house of his dreams Thrumpton Hall in Nottinghamshire, England; the home his Foreign Service parents abandoned him in with relatives when he was two. To make the purchase he marries wealthy Rosemary Scott-Ellis. However, the estate and the manor house instead of his wife became his significant other as everything he did from that pivotal point was to keep his house in perfect order. He expected his children to be as perfect as the house and ripped author Miranda Seymour for being a fat teen. He also did not hide his sexual preference for young males.

This is a fascinating memoir that is made even stronger by the author being the daughter of the subject and her key disclaimer that she does not know all the skeletons. George is an intriguing individual who knew the intricate history of his house especially as the first minor to reside there in over three centuries. His childhood abandonment impacts his adulthood at a time in which the aristocracy is in rapid decline following WWII. He obsesses over owning and maintaining THRUMPTON HALL. Readers will appreciate renowned biographer Miranda Seymour’s look at growing up with a father who cherished his house as his significant other and loved the edifice seemingly more than he did his family.

Harriet Klausner

No comments: