main site
latest twittering
last fm playlist


< # Blogging Brits ? >
< # Girls Blog UK ? >
< # Redhead Blogs ? >
< # Verbosity ? >


Click here to find out why.
Powered by Blogger
Weblog Commenting by
Listed on Blogwise
atom feed

Subscribe with Bloglines
Get Firefox!
The British Bloggers Directory.
 View My Public Stats on


No such City

No Such City

I picked up a fab pulp novel in the charity shop at the weekend: Shabby Tiger by Howard Spring. It has a nakkid girl on the cover. It also has the tagline "Exuberant, outspoken, Rabelaisian" and how often do you see a novel called Rabelaisian these days, eh?

But the real joys lie within. The opening line is

The woman flamed along the road like a macaw.

Do macaws often flame along roads, then?

Then I spotted the disclaimer (see photo). There is no such city as Manchester.

And even the author is fictitious. Has this fallen through a wormhole from the Nineteen Eighty Four universe, in which fiction is mass-produced on the novel-writing machines?

She could describe the whole process of composing a novel, from the general directive issued by the Planning Committee down to the final touching-up by the Rewrite Squad.
She had even ...been picked out to work in Pornosec, the sub-section of the Fiction Department which turned out cheap pornography for distribution among the proles. ... There she had remained for a year, helping to produce booklets in sealed packets with titles like Spanking Stories or One Night in a Girls' School, to be bought furtively by proletarian youths who were under the impression that they were buying something illegal.
Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell

Certainly it has the rough printing on the cover, with rosettes of basic colours barely blurred together: the sort that always makes me think of the magic colouring books I had a child where one swish a a wet paintbrush revealed the colours.

Yet our fictional author has three volumes in his autobiography, according to the 'also by' listing.

Posted @ 12:58 am on Wednesday, October 05, 2005
| | #