The Paying Guests is currently #7 on the New York Times Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers List. I started this novel without knowing anything about it or the author. It is set in post-WW II London. It revolves around Frances, an adult daughter, living with her mother following the loss of both her brothers and her father. After learning that the father mismanaged their finances they let go the help and take in boarders or “paying guests” to pay the bills.
A young couple move in and Frances befriends the wife starting beginning the chaos including romance, adultery, deceit, death, mystery and a dramatic court case. The mother lives downstairs and remains oblivious to her daughter’s involvement in the drama.
I found the book to be a slow and tedious read but slugged through to the anti-climactic climax. The Paying Guests is not a book that I would recommend. I have not read anything else by this author but did learn that two of her previous novels were nominated for Man Booker prizes. It is hard for me to believe that this novel was on the NYT Bestsellers List!