WHY: Hugh Walpole isn't so well-known now, but he was quite popular in his day. There are at least 5 books about the Herries and I believe this is the first. I read about these books in "Nella Last's Peace." she apparently really enjoyed them: "The Herries books to me are always a delight, beyond their style, bringing alive the places I love in the Lakes, peopling them with what could be the family of Rawlinsons (her family) instead of Herries." The footnote describes them, "...regional fiction, the Herries Chronicle (1930-35), which comprised four historical novels, featuring narratives of violence and romance, was set in the Lake District in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries."