First published in 2006, Jo Waltonâ€™s Farthing was hailed as a masterpiece, a darkly romantic thriller set in an alternate postwar England sliding into fascism.
Eight years after they overthrew Churchill and led Britain into a separate peace with Hitler, the upper-crust families of the â€œFarthing setâ€ are gathered for a weekend retreat. Among them is estranged Farthing scion Lucy Kahn, who canâ€™t understand why her and her husband Davidâ€™s presence was so forcefully requested. Then the country-house idyll is interrupted when the eminent Sir James Thirkie is found murderedâ€”with a yellow Star of David pinned to his chest.
Lucy begins to realize that her Jewish husband is about to be framed for the crimeâ€”an outcome that would be convenient for altogether too many of the various political machinations underway in Parliament in the coming week. But whoeverâ€™s behind the murder, and the frame-up, didnâ€™t reckon on the principal investigator from Scotland Yard being a man with very private reasons for sympathizing with outcasts and underdogsâ€”and prone to look beyond the obvious as a result.
As the trap slowly shuts on Lucy and David, they begin to see a way outâ€”a way fraught with peril in a darkening world.