PUBLICATION DATE: 4 OCTOBER 2018 | HARDBACK | £18.99 | HEAD OF ZEUS
The fifth novel in the Dilberne family saga – in which the author traced the life and times of both Upstairs and Downstairs, from the end of Queen Victoria’s reign through the first half of the twentieth century – jumps now into the bright new female light of the twenty-first.
This is the story of Rosalind, the genetic daughter of the 9th Earl of Dilberne. Known as Rozzie to her few friends, she was born at midnight on January 1st, 2000: a true child of the new millennium. She’s officially the offspring of Sandra (a nurse) and Clive Smithson (a jobbing actor), but Rozzie’s real father was described in the sperm bank catalogue as: ‘6ft 1in, blue eyes, blond hair, BA (Oxon), action man’. Back in the old world of 1979, Lord Sebastian – at the age of twenty-two, and cheerfully drunk – had earned 25 quid by selling his spoonful anonymously (as the law then allowed) to an IVF clinic. Twenty years on – sold at half price as old stock – his seed unknowingly produced Rozzie. Rozzie, now discovering all this, is hell-bent on vengeance.
We’re told the tale by the Smithsons’ interfering neighbour Gwinny, a woman with a most interesting, if naughty, past of her own.
After hard times and odd jobs as a lone parent, Fay Weldon became one of the top advertising copywriters of her generation. She moved to TV drama (writing the pilot episode of the iconic series Upstairs Downstairs), then wrote classic novels like The Life and Loves of a She Devil and The Cloning of Joanna May. Her saga of the Dilberne family (the Love and Inheritance trilogy, and Before the War) continues with After the Peace. Fay’s been honoured as a CBE for services to literature, and is currently a Professor of Creative Writing at Bath Spa University.
Why Will No One Publish My Novel? A handbook for the rejected writer by Fay Weldon was published in July 2018, £12, hardback.
PRAISE FOR FAY WELDON
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