HOORAY, THE WEEKEND! ... made even better by the start of a planned buddy read with Lillelara of Patricia Highsmith's A Suspension of Mercy.
"The land around Sydney and Alicia Bartleby’s two-storey cottage was flat, like most Suffolk country. A road, two-laned and paved, went by the house at a distance of twenty yards. To one side of the front walk, which was of slightly askew flagstones, five young elms gave some privacy, and on the other side a tall, bushy hedge provided a better screen for thirty feet. For this reason, Sydney had never trimmed it. The front lawn was as untended as the hedge. The grass grew in tufts, and where it didn’t, fairy rings had eaten circles exposing green-brown earth. The Bartlebys took better care of the ground behind the house, and they had besides a vegetable and flower garden an ornamental pond some five feet across that Sydney had made with a cemented pile of interesting stones in its centre, but they had never succeeded in keeping goldfish alive in it, and two frogs they had put there had decided to go somewhere else."
I'm intrigued. What could possibly lurk behind the hedge that keeps even wildlife from thriving?