Rancid Pansies : Gerald Samper is not a lucky man. Ghost writer of terrible celebrity memoirs and lethally bad cook, he now watches as his beloved house falls off a hill in Tuscany. But he and his guests have been saved from certain death by an apparition - in the form of a certain deceased English princess with great legs. Or, at least, that's how the money-spinning rumour has itâ¦ And so begins a farcical comedy of eccentric Diana pilgrims, dead dinner guests, bad opera and Gerry's specialty field-mouse vol-au-vents. Every bit as outrageous as Cooking with Fernet Branca, James Hamilton-Paterson's latest novel is not for anyone who takes royalty (or, indeed, anything else) too seriously.