The Old Lady Who Invented Goth
(European and American editions)
Having written about Goth since it began, with a past in fanzines (starting in 1976) and music journalism, I guess it isn't surprising what lies at the heart of my first novel, THE OLD LADY WHO INVENTED GOTH, but this is not a typical book. For a start the first edition is illustrated in a new way for a novel, while the story is a prequel to what we know and understand. 100 years ago Hermione M. Lee wanted what we have now, but it simply didn't exist. As she was just fourteen, and a surprisingly foul-mouthed child, with The Great War brewing quietly in the distance there wasn't a great deal she could do about it, or anything. Of course, that never stopped her trying, from the moment she found creativity crackling beneath her fingernails and in a busy life Hermione was rarely inert for long. A champion of darkness, and yet a vanquisher of gloom, Hermione M. Lee is a Gothic blueprint in action, living a life steeped in sin and intrigue, but justifiably so.
What we take for granted was just a shapeless pipedream for her, but with due diligence, and a blatant disregard for decency, she set about her task of trying to light the pathway to darkness, to entice others in on her shadowy obsessions, to revel in the heady realms of atmospheric adventure.
Real life would rudely interrupt the theatrical costumier, as she became, and the Second World War most of all, but here was an impish provocateur, a writer, a schemer, a therapist, a liar, and a con artist, a flirt, a wit, a physical threat.
She flourishes in the twenties and thirties, performs valiant deeds through the forties, and cosies up to the youth cults which germinate in the fifties and spread through the sixties and seventies, mocking all and sundry, wielding a contemptuous vocal scythe through any who did not appreciate what she knew was intrinsically preferable. Teddy boys, mods, rockers and punks all benefit from encounters with her, and then it all reaches a peak in the 80's, in her eighties.
An inspirational tragic-comic tale, and one which should resonate with each and every one of you.
The book is £7.99 and only available through lulu.com. You need to register with Lulu before you buy, which is easy, but if buying by airmail ignore their express option as that involves courier rates, and stick with the economy version which is normal airmail. Within the UK or US stick with the cheapest postage option provided.
There are two editions, to make the postage both faster and cheaper for you, an A5 (8" x 5") edition for Europe, printed in Europe, and a 'Royal' size (9" x 6") American Edition, printed in America.
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