Books by Paul Bailey

THE PRINCE'S BOY by Paul Bailey
Released: Oct. 14, 2014

"A love story coexists uneasily with the rise of fascism."
Two Romanian men find true love in 1920s Paris in this slim novel from the prolific British author (Chapman's Odyssey, 2012, etc.). Read full book review >
Released: July 17, 2012

"An entertaining conceit, if modestly executed: More a mash note to memory and literary culture than a full-bodied novel."
An ailing novelist and actor tangles with the ghosts of parents, past lovers and a host of literary heroes. Read full book review >
UNCLE RUDOLF by Paul Bailey
Released: Feb. 1, 2004

"Veteran Bailey (Kitty and Virgil, 2000, etc.) navigates with economy and grace between two lives and among many time-frames. This British author's skills—and magic touch for showing love at work—make for a texture unusually rich."
An adoring nephew pays homage to his childhood savior, a star of European operettas, in a masterly, unsentimental evocation of childhood and exile. Read full book review >
Released: March 16, 1992

The affectionate memories of a gay man—not to mention actor, playwright, and author of such novels as At the Jerusalem and Gabriel's Lament—who's clearly made his peace with a troubled past and a family that did its best to keep him in the closet. Bailey was born in 1937 suburban London to a professional maid and a road-sweeper. He was their late-in-life ``mistake,'' though his mother made it clear to him that, as with Shakespeare's bastard Edmund, ``there was good sport'' at her youngest son's making. The knowledge pleases Bailey, which is good since a backward look might otherwise prove depressing for him. He almost died of diphtheria at four, lost his remote father when he was eleven (only to learn at the funeral that the elder Bailey had another family from a failed first marriage), and was both saddled and blessed in his mother, a woman of remarkable prejudices who'd nonetheless remain a touchstone. To her, opera was ``closet music'' sung by ``squawking foreign cows,'' Shakespeare a snob, and a boy (like hers) who cried and brought his mum flowers ``not natural.'' Paul figured out quickly that he couldn't ever be ``natural'': Why else would the movie-star pictures he hoarded be of Marlon Brando instead of Marilyn Monroe? But he didn't anguish over it much, simply signed up for a place at the Central School of Speech and Drama and moved out of his pinched little world. There are no depths probed or nature-nurture insights to be found here, just a fine evocation of time and place offered by a man who knows precisely where he came from. Read full book review >