“It’s a thriller, a wickedly funny insider’s view of the book trade and the heroine has a backbone – for me the perfect storm of an entertaining read. Sam Clair lives alone and likes it; she’s a great one for making her own rules. She works as a publisher and she recently commissioned Kit Lovell, Gay Best Friend and fashion guru, to write a book about the murder of an iconic designer. But several I people are taking an unhealthy interest in the manuscript, and suddenly Sam’s quiet working life is getting murkier by the minute. What’s in the book that I people are so desperate to see? And where on earth is Kit? To make it more complicated, a policeman is buzzing around her, and he’s distractingly gorgeous. Best of all, Sam’s Dr Watson is her elegant, overachieving mother — a successful lawyer and all-round brilliant character who’s not above a little mild law-breaking. Loved it.”
Kate Saunders, The Times
You know when you have one of those days at the office? You spill coffee on your keyboard, the finance director goes on an expenses rampage and then, before you know it, your favourite author is murdered. When Samantha Clair decides to publish journalist Kit Lovell’s tell-all book on the death of fashion designer Rodrigo Aleman, she can scarcely imagine the dangers ahead. Cue a rollercoaster ride into the dark realms of fashion, money-laundering and murder, armed with nothing but her e-reader and her trusty stock of sarcasm.
The Victorian City
Victorian buildings still surround Londoners, so we are under the impression we know the Victorian city and how it functioned. But just as Flanders’ The Victorian House revealed the long-lost daily routines of the Victorian home, so now she describes the comings and goings of the world’s largest city. Calling on the magical eye of Charles Dickens, possibly the greatest ‘look-er’ the city has ever seen, Flanders takes her readers down the teeming city streets of the 19th century, conjuring up the once-common street-bands, street-sellers, street-walkers and street-children. How did passengers hail an omnibus? How were the streets paved before macadam? How did householders collect their drinking water? With these and other questions, Flanders brings back to life a city of pea-soup fogs, horse manure, and even gutters running with blood.
Recent Posts and Journalism
- Choreography may be the most difficult of all performing-art forms. The dance-lover is all too aware that the standard theatre or opera repertoires contain thousands of works. Dance, by contrast, has a repertoire that numbers only in the hundreds, and most companies commonly draw on only dozens of works. For… Read more
- RICHARD HAMILTON, Tate Modern RICHARD HAMILTON AT THE ICA RICHARD HAMILTON: Word and Image: Prints 1963–2007, Alan Cristea Gallery Mark Godfrey Paul Schimmel and Vicente Todoli, editors, RICHARD HAMILTON (352pp. Tate. £29.99) Jonathan Jones, RICHARD HAMILTON: Word and Image: Prints 1963–2007 (155pp. Alan Cristea Gallery. £25) Richard Hamilton was a… Read more
- Susan Jones: Literature, Modernism and Dance (360pp. Oxford University Press. £55) In 1930s literary London, ballet was everywhere. Virginia Woolf, several Stracheys, the Bells, E. M. Forster, H. G. Wells, John Middleton Murry and Katherine Mansfield, Aldous Huxley, the Sitwells and T. S. Eliot all attended the Ballets Russes. Louis… Read more
- Sam Mendes’s current production of King Lear at the National, starring Simon Russell Beale, is fascinating in many ways, perhaps the most notable being the ramping up of the body-count of this bloody play. In most stagings, the Fool disappears, his death referenced in a passing sigh, “my poor Fool… Read more
- It is possible to see Gloria, Kenneth MacMillan’s howl of rage at the wanton waste of the First World War, as the final piece in a great arc of expressionist dance, from Vaslav Nijinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps (1913), through Bronislava Nijinska’s Les Noces (1923), to Gloria (1980). The first… Read more