A witty, perceptive social comedy, perfect for lovers of Anita Shreve.
The Byng family - theatrical down to the youngest, 12-year-old Cordelia - is stunned out of even their normal self-involvement by the news that their father, the celebrated Shakespearean actor, has apparently killed his rival on stage during the last rehearsals for the new production of 'King Lear'.
Waldo Byng is arrested for murder and held in police custody; the press camp outside the house, detectives attempt to interview the family and friends, and Clarissa Byng abandons the entire scene by fleeing with her long-time companion.
It is left to the rest of the family to try to find a way through this disaster, and above all to earn some money as the play is, naturally, cancelled. The nine months from arrest to the final trial are a wonderful learning curve about the real world for all of them, in particular for Harriet, considered the most "sensible" of the remarkable family.
'Clouds Among The Stars' is a true pleasure to read: it has an outstanding cast of characters, wonderful scenes, and is written with a style, charm and verve that makes one want to read it more than once.