Georgie Sinclair's life is coming unstuck. Her husband, Rip, has left her for flicking Cappuccino froth over his precious Blackberry. Her "slightly-too-serious" 16-year old son, Ben, spends his nights surfing the "the world-wide waves." And now her neighbour, Naomi Shapiro, an eccentric elderly Jewish emigrée, decides they are related.
As the two women start to bond, Naomi's stinky north London mansion becomes the focus of manic cleansing and intrigue, as Georgie tries to discover the secrets of her neighbour's past from letters and photographs.
The story that eventually emerges of Holocaust horrors sits a little uneasily alongside the present-day caper, but Lewycka's talent for outré outrage remains undimmed.