HARRY PATCH, the last surviving soldier to serve in the trenches of the first world war, died yesterday at the age of 111. It has been a priviledge to represent him and the book he co-wrote with Richard Van Emden, THE LAST FIGHTING TOMMY. Harry was an unforgettable man, gentle and humorous. In honouring him, we should not forget that he did not remember his time as a soldier as anything but terrifying and tragic; war, he said, was not worth the loss of even a couple of lives. I hope that as many people as possible read his book and remember his message.
UP WITH THE LARKS is published today and this wonderful memoir of downshifting from international cosmetics company manager to village postie has already had 3 pages of coverage in the Daily Mail and 3 pages in the Western Morning News and has - unheard of these days - reprinted before publication. We expect great things - Tessa Hainsworth could be the Peter Mayle of Cornwall!
Orion Books are to publish the new novel from Harold Carlton, whose debut LABELS sold 800,000 copies with Bantam US and UK twenty years ago. Harold was my very first client when I started my agency so it is a particular pleasure that he has returned to writing and to have made such an exciting sale of his new novel.
Kate Mills and her colleagues are hugely enthusiastic about it and will publish as a lead title in March 10.
Set in the world of haute couture in Paris in the late '60s, HEAVEN, HELL AND CHANEL tells the intertwining stories of four young people crazy for fashion - it's a glorious, sexy old-fashioned page-turner and I am expecting it to sell all over the world. Welcome back Harold!