Published last week by Book Guild, Muddleton is a comic romp through the misadventures of the Hogg-Marchmont family – a hopelessly dysfunctional aristocratic dynasty. With a narrative that spans 250 years, author Brian Luff intertwines elements of historical spoof, supernatural occurrences, and absurd comedy.

In the opening pages, readers are introduced to Hogg Hall, a grand ancestral home on the brink of demolition. The local council’s order to tear it down serves as the central conflict, pushing the eccentric Earl Hardy Hogg-Marchmont to find a way to save his beloved estate. As if the challenge isn’t daunting enough, the Earl receives a visit from the ghosts of his ancestors, who are furious and desperate to preserve their legacy.

Luff’s book has the historic weight of shows like Downton Abbey, while having the surreal and madcap vibe of comedies like Father Ted and Blackadder. The narrative captures the absurdity and quirks of the upper class, and is peppered with dark humour and outlandish scenarios that may sometimes leave readers utterly baffled and bewildered. The farcical nature of the Hogg-Marchmonts’ schemes and interactions is vividly brought to life with sharp dialogue and carefully paced comedic beats.

The author’s background in comedy writing for television, theatre, and digital media is evident throughout the novel. Luff’s ability to craft laugh-out-loud scenes while maintaining a coherent and engaging storyline is commendable, and his experience as a short film maker shines through in his vivid descriptions and cinematic storytelling style. What sets Muddleton apart from typical comic novels is its depth, attention to detail and intricacy, making the book very difficult to put down.

Muddleton is a must-read for fans of historical spoof and humorous novels. Brian Luff’s unique voice and seasoned expertise make this an unforgettable and entertaining journey through the chaotic lives of the Hogg-Marchmont family.

Available now in paperback and Kindle edition  Buy Book

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