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The Lusty Youth of Roger Brook

Posted: Wed 23 Jan, 2008 17:09:53
by Jim
This is a totally amazing find: when we thought that just about everything by Wheatley (save OF VICE AND VIRTUE) had been published, and republished!

I'm curious about the typescript, as evidence of DW's working methods. How is the "core" book inserted into the new one? Was the original 1947 novel simply re-typed with new matter added from longhand drafts?

Also, the wills. Is there any hope of the family allowing them to be printed here? (I assume the final will is a public document, but it would be interesting to compare.) We already have the "Letter to Posterity"--which, coincidentally, goes back to the same year as the original LAUNCHING OF ROGER BROOK.

At the height of DW's popularity, I'm sure this would have sold like crazy--especially given the nature of the additional material. <g> (What other writer had almost every novel he'd ever written still available in hardcover?) Now, it's probably too late for either this book or VICE AND VIRTUE to be published except in a small (and expensive) edition for diehard collectors, but it's nice to know they still exist somewhere.

Re: The Lusty Youth of Roger Brook

Posted: Wed 23 Jan, 2008 17:56:29
by Stevie P
[quote="Jim"] Is there any hope of the family allowing them to be printed here?

My thoughts exactly Jim. It would at least be good to know just how much it would cost to get the book published.
Its quite frustrating to think there is some more more written material available by DW , but we can't see it.
If it was produced in a paperback format the costs would be reduced.

Posted: Thu 24 Jan, 2008 05:07:28
by Jim
Stevie, I think you misread me. I asked if the family would have any problem with DW's wills being published here. That would be pretty simple, if there were no objection.

The publication of LUSTY and VICE, though, would now involve several parties: the Wheatley family, which I'd assume still controls the Brook-Richleau Ltd. copyrights, and whoever owns the actual manuscripts of these two books. However, *IF* all parties should be agreeable, it would be a wonderful thing. (You're right, a trade paperback would be less expensive--but don't all true collectors want a hardcover?)

Posted: Fri 25 Jan, 2008 22:00:45
by Charles
Glad you enjoyed the post ! It is certainly the most exciting item I've come across, and if I ever come across anything to rival it I'll count myself fortunate indeed !

You can imagine the collation was a labour of love ... and while I was going through it every time a member of my family came in the room I tended to close it up to pre-empt any difficult questions !

Re how the book was put together, it's hard to be definitive as this is a typescript, albeit one with a large number of annotations (including of erotic bits) in DW's own hand.

Rather than being made up of a typescript of TLRB with extra pages added in, it is a complete re-type with the extra portions flowing smoothly in the text, with sequential page numbers (except for a page 73A) from start to finish of a large volume which runs to 740 pages.

The additions fall into four separate categories

1. Minor changes to the existing text where DW has re-read TLRB and decided to word
something a bit differently, or to change someoneÂ’s title.

2. Additions to existing chapters of new pages or paragraphs describing Roger's sexual
experiences of the time - for example Chapter III has new portions about two of
RogerÂ’s early amorous adventures as well as an expanded section about Georgina.

3. Additions of completely new chapters - although these often start or end with pages
which were originally in the preceding or following chapters.

4. The additions about events which lie in Roger’s future. There are two of these –
83 pages dealing with the events described in TMWKTK, and one page almost at the
end of the book dealing with how Roger and GeorginaÂ’s lives end. In both cases these
glimpses of the future are separated from the rest of the text by lines of asterisks.

As I have said, all of this is in a continuously typed document. There is however one curious typographic feature – the bulk of the book is written in a small typeface, while the title page, Author’s Note and table of contents (i.e. the pages illustrated on the website) and five pages in Chapter XXVIII are in a much larger typeface.

As far as I can tell, and I stand to be corrected, DW only started using this larger typeface in the early 1960s, which would suggest that the introductory pages and the small number of pages in Chapter XXVIII were written after the rest had been completed.

In sum, it is clear the book was not dashed off in a hurry, but was crafted with the same meticulous attention and care to detail that DW applied to his other novels.

That leaves your questions about publication of the Will etc Â… IÂ’ll come on to them in a couple of days time if I may Â…Â…

All the best to all as always

Posted: Sun 3 Feb, 2008 21:06:40
by Charles
Coming back to the question of the 1971 Will, I am hoping after I've finished updating the 'Publications' area of the website to start a new section - a 'virtual museum' dedicated to displaying personal items from the life of Dennis Wheatley.

When I do that, I'll certainly include at least parts of the 1971 Will as well as various other items that may be of interest.

The Wheatley family have very kindly given me the o.k. - it's now a matter of gathering in and organising the material.

I wasn't going to announce it until later as I didn't want to raise expectations before I knew I could fulfil them, but as you've raised the question, it seems a good time to mention it. But there's a fair amount to add to the 'Publications' section before I get round to it.

Also, some material I won't announce until it's appeared in Phil's book.

So all being well, we've got lots to look forward to.

All the best as always

Posted: Wed 6 Feb, 2008 15:33:34
by Jim
More and more fascinating. The original book (LAUNCHING) had already been reprinted in THE EARLY ADVENTURES OF ROGER BROOK (1951), and would also be available as a Lymington edition hardcover as early as 1961 (in addition to all the paperback editions). What motivated this new version, entailing, as it did, almost as much work as a new novel? We'll never know, but it's fun to speculate...

Thanks also for the hints of things to come!