The House in Little Chelsea

The House in Little Chelsea

A unique history of a Victorian house, brought to life in a witty and compelling fictional form 

"A story of social change and the evolution of a neighbourhood, full of human interest and the richness and sadness of the passing of time – I loved the irrepressible character who combined the skills of barrister, chef and advertising genius, and the poor first owner with her aesthetic aspirations and her artwork – the kind of history we imagine for our houses (but not so fully), assembled from small relics and suggestions." - Margaret Drabble

In a vivid blend of history and fiction, Clare Hastings tells the story of a house in London’s Little Chelsea – the house in which she lives – and its inhabitants, from 1873, when it was ‘topped out’, to the 1930s.

Detailed in the census records and other sources, these very real residents – ranging from bodice-makers by way of booksellers (and a bigamist) to that glamorous, though unemployed, Irish barrister – are all now long gone, but their footsteps are etched into the floorboards at Finborough Road, and into the imagination of the author. In these pages, Clare Hastings’s warmth, humour and compelling storytelling bring them back to life.

A unique history of a Victorian house, brought to life in a witty and compelling fictional form 

"This beguiling little book mixes fact and fiction to recreate the life of a house in Chelsea – the house in which the author lives – from 1873 to the 1920s. Perfect Christmas present for aunts, and everyone else really."

Harpers Bazaar Allison Pearson

“I’m very jealous of the novel – although I have a good opinion of myself as a writer of non-fiction, I have never had the imaginative skills to try a novel, and know that I could never bring it off.  It is an inspired idea of yours to trace the occupants of your house, a universal theme because this could be any London house over the same span.   The ghosts have spoken to you with wonderful effect and if there is any justice in the world you will have a real success.”

Max Hastings

"This brilliant inventive book – part history, part novel – is all about what it means to be a Londoner!”  

Peter York

"The history of a house, filled with characters that immediately came to life. I deal with stories every day, and I'd highly recommend it"

Artistic Director, Finborough Theatre Neil McPherson

"A story of social change and the evolution of a neighbourhood, full of human interest and the richness and sadness of the passing of time – I loved the irrepressible character who combined the skills of barrister, chef and advertising genius, and the poor first owner with her aesthetic aspirations and her artwork – the kind of history we imagine for our houses (but not so fully), assembled from small relics and suggestions."

Margaret Drabble
Imprint
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
Publisher
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
Language
English
Product Format
Hardback
Dimensions
216 x 135
Publication Date
6 Sep 2018
Number of Pages
176
ISBN
9781910258965
Product Format
Kindle
Dimensions
216 x 135
Publication Date
6 Sep 2018
Number of Pages
176
ISBN
9781910258408