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The Landlady’s Niece

What Elinor Richardson is looking for weighs about a hundred and eighty pounds, stands six feet tall and preferably doesn’t wear his socks to bed. With her children grown and gone to the States, and her ex-husband left behind in Montreal, Elinor finds herself free at last to chart the uncertain waters of the single life in Toronto. But just when her escape seems complete, Elinor is lured back to Montreal for the funeral of her aunt and namesake and is stunned to find herself the sole heir to the old woman’s pride and joy: a gloriously dilapidated apartment building, complete with a perforated roof, buckled floors and a janitress from hell. In short, her aunt’s bequest is likely to leave Elinor in the poorhouse. So she moves into the top floor unit, under an assumed name and plunges into the adventure of renovation, hoping to avoid the interference of her well-meaning pillar-of -the-Anglo-community parents and her tycoon ex-husband. But her anonymity can’t keep her safe from the temptations of her too handsome neighbour, or the rough charms of her janitress’ bulky husband. Then, as her renovation efforts reach a percolating crisis, Elinor is forced to have one last dealing with her ex, who just may be the source of the capital she needs to complete her project. Of course she can’t help noticing that Andrew still has his looks, his old appeal and even most of his hair. Suddenly, Elinor has a decision to make.

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