Eponymous heroine of a series of books by E. F. Benson, set in the era between the two world wars. Lucia is a middle-aged upper-middle-class housewife
living in a small town in England
, Riseholme (pronounced "Rhizome
") that prides itself on its Elizabethan
heritage. Lucia is known, locally as the Queen of Riseholme -- thin, stylish, with impeccable taste, her house is the most authentic (she has an all-Elizabethan wing, next to her Shakespeare garden
that has not only all
of the flowers in the plays, but bedded out as which play they're in), her husband, 'Pepino', is a poet of some note, and her skill at the piano
(her signature piece is the "Moonlight Sonata
", though she dislikes the last two movements...they "go faster") is only eclipsed by her fame as a speaker of Italian
, with which she communicates with her best friend Georgie, a local painter somewhat light in the loafers
(he paints young boys with dreamy expressions since he "can't do eyes well"). Her rival for social supremacy is the fat, ditzy, trend-crazy Daisy Quantock, who covets Lucia's effortless social acumen and fashion sense
...and will do almost anything to steal her spotlight...
These books are, to put it bluntly, hilarious, and anyone who likes "Absolutely Fabulous" will enjoy these. Lucia and her friends are vain, shallow, and full of weird quirks...and the situation only gets better when she goes on vacation to a similar town by the sea, called Tilling, where she meets her match, the redoubtable Miss Mapp. Oh, and did I mention she can't really speak Italian?