CHARLIE MORTIMER    Book Number: 82209    Product format: Hardback

Diagnosed as HIV positive in 1986, Charlie "Lupin" Mortimer was told he had only about two years to live. But while other early victims of AIDS died, Lupin obstinately kept alive, and with the new drugs of the nineties became one of the HIV generation to enjoy an active life, supported by his partner Tim and enlivened by an irrepressible wit and daredevil personality. This memoir is a tremendous testament to life lived to the full with maximum enjoyment. A major character in his life was his mother, a redoubtable lady who in her eighties regretted no longer being able to gallop over the Downs or overtake police cars at speed when well over the limit. Lupin's education followed the path of many an upper class youth, starting with Wellesley House prep school and progressing to Eton. Wellesley reminds Lupin of the school in Waugh's Decline and Fall, with a memorable trio of staff who were barking mad, including Mr 'Baz' Brooker and his well-known bayonet. Ian Fleming borrowed the names of Wellesley boys for his Bond villains, for instance Goldfinger and Scaramanga, while Miss Vickers, the French teacher, looked just like Bond's nemesis Rosa Klebb. Eton was a riot of flogging, but Lupin was no innocent, keeping several handguns, while Fleming's son Casper had a machine gun in his laundry bag. Lupin's big interest was in cars, however, and he acquired his first aged 12. His careers have included vintage car restorer, manufacturer of Raffateer boxer shorts with their risqué slogans, and recently as an antiques dealer. Never a dull moment. 310pp.
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ISBN 9781472117298
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