"The Vacillations of Poppy Carey" opens with two key events: the departure of Poppy's thoroughly detestable lover, Edmund, into the arms of a richer woman; and the death of her father who, much to the irritation of the nursing staff, dies in the midst of raucous laughter. Left bereft by these losses, Poppy follows her father's dying wish and organises a 'fun' funeral, complete with black plumed horses and a suspicious number of glamorous women who seem to know a very different side to her father. Also present at the funeral are three men who are determined to become her suitors: Willy, a pig farmer; Victor, a novelist moonlighting as the caterer; and Fergus, the undertaker.
However, the treacherous Edmund shows up as well and, discovering that Poppy is now heiress to a substantial fortune, abandons his new love interest and whisks Poppy off to Africa, where she embarks on a series of chaotic adventures. Will she escape Edmund's clutches? And, if so, who of her three suitors will she escape with?
"Prances and bubbles along with the gay insouciance of a compulsive storyteller" * Observer *
"Mary Wesley is high-spirited and inventive, and keeps her wayward plot moving forward at a spanking pace" * Daily Telegraph *
"Wesley's narration is as fast and surprising as ever; her subplots are well worked out and rich in detail" * Times Literary Supplement *
"A charming love story and social comedy" -- Philip Howard * The Times *
"Once again she deploys her admirably comic skill to good effect; puncturing the pompous, exposing humbug, nudging our perceptions in the direction of the absurd" * Financial Times *