LEAVING THE BELLWEATHERS, by Kristin Clark Venuti (Egmont 2009)(ages 8-12). Tristan Benway is the latest in a long line of butlers to the Bellweather family, bound to their service for two hundred years by a blood oath of fealty sworn by a long-dead ancestor. And family honor demands that the Benways keep their oath.
It isn't easy, though, when the Bellweathers live in a lighthouse, and have five incredibly destructive children. Throw in an albino alligator, a performing seal, and a plot to steal the Mona Lisa, and Tristan will be more than happy to see the two hundred year term of the oath expire.
If he survives that long...
LEAVING THE BELLWEATHERS is a terrifically zany romp, accurately described in the catalog copy as "the Addams Family meets Cheaper by the Dozen."