Robert Nevil Launches a Book

Thursday 12th November 2009

Did I mention?  Robert Nevil has written a book. It’s not the first time. On the whole Poor Little Rich Gays would rather write a book than read one. And some not even that: the Photographer Multi once went to graph Hilary Mantel (writer, you must have heard of). He said, ‘I’ve never read a book so I can’t imagine why anyone would want to write one.’ She was thrilled. I mean she really was.

Foolishly I’ve been pretending not to know what the Robert Nevil volume is about. It’s an utterly thrilling historie de le club Pony, or A History of the Pony Club, sub-titled ‘Gee up!’ I’ve not read it yet, but take it from me Robert Nevil can enliven any subject. It will be superb. His first book was un-put downers, a biog of an obscure woman in Putney who held her guests to ransom all over Christmas with a bread knife – and was mystified that they didn’t want to come the following year. That had a devoted cult following. This new one will be huge. Already it has received a special mention from a very top bishop giving a sermon, in the presence of Royalty, on ‘How Useful Outdoor Activities Bring You into the Arms of Jesus’.

It’s flying out of the shops. Robert Nevil could be a multi yet. I wonder what he will have – car with driver?  seccies in an outer office? Racehorses? He could mount an aggressive takeover bid for Massivebury and drive out Smallmeal and Limpney – or reduce them to a minority shareholding. ‘Just the attic for you, Smallmeal!’

But the launch party – simple venue, back of bookshop with ordinary members of the public milling at the front. No rhythmic thrust of canapés forging out, as per Con Party on Monday. Publishing. Reduced. Nevertheless Poor Little Rich Gays must be there – and are. The lure of books  irresistible, even to non-readers – it’s importance you see, couldn’t possibly miss it. Books are important.

What a whirl! So many people known to me, not all with names though. Ghastly blank with Helmut Mutti (very important editor).  Otherwise it was one sentence per person approx: Eddie Sedgewick: ‘Got to get back to Brighton – dogs!’ Miss Lallian Lark, of the Titlark Tours: ‘We used to live opposite’ (Yes, where the avo bathroom was). Lady Parvula de Panzoust: ‘I’ve been to Uniqlo.’ Leon de Veer and Miles Kent (you won’t remember: Anthony Mottram went down with Swine at their home, The Vases, in July) ‘How’s Lady de Veer?’  Ambrose Cecil (music master and friend at Robert Nevil and Eddie Sedgewick’s school): ‘We’re only two bus stops apart.’ Rick Mather: ‘Loved your Ashmoleon extension’.  Mary Slubb (wrote bestseller on how the leccy came to her street): ‘Hello, how are you?’ Kit Reading (author of The Slut’s Cookbook): smile, smile.

Robert Nevil made a speechlette, saying  Thank God I cut out the rude bits about the C of E (in view of bishop going wild for his book). But where was Sebastian Archer, his itinerant partner? Well, yes, wandered off to New York. Boarded that morning apparently. Modern gay relationships! Instead Robert’s friends from the sub-continent in abundance. Arjun Bose (was at my birthday, in miraculous shirt) most affectionate, huggy, huggy, but will it last? Sadly Abdul Mohammed Habibi busy running the Double Diner in Whitehaven, couldn’t come.

It was the best kind of party, with all your closest friends and many others you know and a glow coming centrally from Robert Nevil who is adored. I don’t mean to mock. You see everyone for a flash, a spark flies, something might happen. It is life.

The bookshop said it was their best launch ever – and last week, they had Giles Brandreth!

Afterwards the Multis, Laura Malcolm, Matt Driver, Frankie-Doreen Gunn (in black satin; the only one who could be said to be truly frocked. Her husband, Giles Ullerston, at woodwork class), Peter Acharya, Ned Czernowski and Bruce MacBain (my architect; always have him at hand, in case I need a building running up) went to the Royal China. But we somehow got into the wrong branch. It was the Royal China Club, in Baker Street, smoked glass, big fish tank, smoke-coloured carpet, staff Chinese version of Bond Girls. Faintly sinister, Sixties throw-back, whiff of Monaco. Who should be at the next table but SIR PHILIP GREEN!

That says it all.

I sit next to Matt Driver, about to board for Germany to meet with Adidas at the highest level in forest clearing somewhere. He said it’s a very macho company, they’re all massive muscle-men who work out at lunchtime. Sounds quite gay.

We go dutch and have cheaper wine. The Multis are terribly excited. £60 a head.

Posted Thursday, November 12, 2009 under Adrian Edge day by day.

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  1. As I’m appearing quite a lot these days can I request a crisp little biog in the Dramatis Personae column?

  2. Laura Malcolm says:

    Eddie Sedgewick’s shrill demand for an entry in Dramatis Personae is pure PLRG. Eddie, darling, this is SO not all about you, and Mr Manners says I want doesn’t get.

  3. admin says:

    I do beg pardon. Definitely yes!

  4. admin says:

    Oh no!

  5. Hugo Priestley says:

    And can we please have one for Lady Parvula de Panzoust – I know she’s much too modest to do a Sedgewick.

  6. barbara cruz says:

    Only $60 a head??? ………and your Sir Philip Green was there also? Does he own Top shop and Top co (that now owns British Airways and some Spanish Air carrier also – my UK broker told me that that merger was going to be announced so I made a killing stocking up on the shares before yesterday).

    Where is that eatery place and do you have any shots of it (as I would very much like to visit it when I am in London next)? Obviously the super rich now how to stay Super – knowing how to get more bang for their buck in these secret eating venues. Thanks for the tip AE.

  7. Oh, how exciting…everybody’s talking at last! Are we on Facebook?

  8. admin says:

    I do hope not

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