The Tale of Castle Cottage
In the final installment of The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, it is 1913 and Beatrix is busy trying to renovate Castle Cottage as a future home for her and Will Heelis. However, with both families opposing their marriage and her brother about to drop a bombshell of his own, Beatrix sees no happily ever after in her future. Add to this discrepancies on several construction sites run by her contractor, a gang of thieving rats, and a suspect suicide, and both Beatrix and her animal friends have much to do to restore harmony to the Land Between the Lakes.
As a Beatrix Potter fan, I have read the entire series of Cottage Tales, gentle mysteries aimed at readers of all ages, each with one of Beatrix’s “little books” as a central theme. I enjoyed the earlier books a little more than the later ones, where the mysteries are downplayed and the narrator’s voice becomes more intrusive. Even so, I was sorry to see the series come to an end. Fans will of course wish to round out the series; new readers intrigued by the premise should go back to The Tale of Hill Top Farm to enjoy the story from the beginning.