Francis King

Dressed To Kill

The Girl in the Polka Dot Dress

By

Little, Brown 201pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

When, many years ago, we were both resident in Brighton, Somerset Maugham’s nephew Robin would from time to time telephone to say that it was far too long since we had ‘surveyed the literary scene together’ – a phrase that he favoured – and how about meeting up for lunch or dinner? In fact, what he really wanted to survey was not the literary scene but his own ambitious part in it. We would then spend an hour or two discussing the progress of his latest novel in every smallest detail. Of course I felt flattered to be treated as his unacknowledged collaborator. But I could not help wishing that, on just one occasion, he would ask me: ‘And what about that book of yours?’ 

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