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Dorothy Hewlett

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A Shocking Bad Hat - Dorothy Hewlett
[1941] UK hardback first edition, first imperssion published by Hurst & Blackett in London
A VG indeed book in very attractive unclipped dust jacket
The book tigh and solid, nice copy, small previous owner bookplate to pastedown (covered by front flap)
The wrapper is priced 9/6 and is very bright, only shallow chips to spine top
Absolutely superb artwork, some of the ost eyecatching I've seen for a while

Synopsis
A Victorian mystery story set in the London of 1850

This second novel by Miss Hewlett, whose successful first one, "Victorian House," received high praise in the Press from Hugh Walpole, Frank Swinnerton, Richard Church, and many others, is again set in London in the period of "Victorian House"—the days of the Great Exhibition. The chief character, a charming and unsophisticated youth, is brought by accident into a series of adventures which intermingle with his own love affair. In the course of these he meets Inspector Bill, an old-time police officer in tight trousers, blue swallow-tail coat and leather top hat, who plays an interesting part in the story.

A very bright and attractive thicker format book 1.25 inch spine
A very rare book from a notoriously rare war time period, never seen another

For Sale at £65 (approx $97) uspbb - Delivery Information ~ Free & Subsidised ~ Please Check

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Sample
WE'RE UNCOMMON SWELL TO-NIGHT, BERTIE—WHO is SHE?" "Mind your own business." Though he was constantly fretted by the interest his follow clerks took in his private affairs Bertram Downing's tone was, both from policy and innate good temper, easy: E. K. K., too, had barbed curiosity with impertinence, pronouncing his intimate name after the newer, vulgar fashion. In that year of 1850 well-bred persons called him "Bartie." "But other people's business," E. K. K. objected, tilting his high stool back and, by a neat twist, depositing his legs on the top of the desk, "is so much more interestin' than one's own. Come on, cough it up, B. M. D.—who is she?"

The clerks in the counting-house of Messrs. Merlin & Cowl were in the habit of addressing one another by initials: it was a rigid rule with Mr. Capstick, head clerk and virtual manager of the firm, that all ledger entries and memoranda should be signed by initials neatly marshalled in line with a full stop between each. Those of E. K. K. and B. M. D. were, if perhaps only to themselves, of peculiar family interest, Edmund Kean Kerr being the child of a father who, from a humble but enthusiastic gallery seat, had been the drama near its dazzling height and Bertram Manfred Downing the son of a romantic mother who had once met Lord Byron. Bertie's care for his toilet before he left the office that night supported E. K. K.'s inference. Removing his office coat he washed off the day's grime at a little stand in the corner with an energy which made E. K. K., who disliked soap and water, positively shudder. Then, illuminating the small mirror by a desk candle perched on its narrow ledge, he lifted the wings of a wide, lightly starched collar and tied a new white cravat. He brushed his long fair hair till it shone, set its curve into the back of the neck with the palm of his hand and then, examining for any speck of dust the plum-coloured coat he had worn when he came to the office that morning, put it on and strapped his lavender trousers tighter under the instep. Finally, balancing on one foot as if the operation were a delicate one, he held aloft a top hat of impressive height which, after a moment of indecision, descended at a becoming angle on the fair head.

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