Go, Said the Bird - Geoffrey CotterellThe Book Club, 1966, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Good+ — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Unlaminated dust wrapper a little edgeworn and faded. The dust wrapper has been mylar-protected and there is now offset to the boards and pastedowns from the tape. Text complete, clean and tight but a little age-tanned and musty.
From the cover: “Prosperous, solid, unshakably at the top of their own social pyramid, the Miltons were worth envying, especially for a young man with his whole life to make. Mr. Milton owned a small factory and his tough, cautious management of it meant that his family, driving to the golf club in the Milton Rolls, need envy no one in return. Young Phillip Terriss, admired the Miltons. He loved them. Not just Debbie, the spoilt attractive daughter, but all of them. In a strange way his whole life came to be built round his love affair with the family and in telling the story of it this novel also tells the story of a whole generation of English life.
It starts when Mr. Milton picks him out from an obscure corner of the works and makes him his personal assistant. It is a job Terriss can manage beautifully. Enthusiastic, good looking and charming he is the ideal PA.
A trip to the continent makes him certain that he is being groomed for the top. The wasteland of boarding-houses and bed-sitters will not be his home for much longer. Terriss is on the way up. All this happens just before the war and it is the war that cruelly wrecks his plans. Debbie, he feels sure, is going to marry him: their love affair has moved from warm to hot. An overseas posting and a young officer left at home to court her put an end to that: before Terriss returns she has married and it is John Somes, the stiff, priggish officer, who is in the line of succession. When old Mr. Milton dies it takes Somes very few words to snulTout Terriss’s remaining hopes. Yet in a way he is inextinguishable. His love affair with the family continues and what he cannot have in fact he takes in imagination. Affluent and relaxed in the bar at the Savoy, ‘John Somes’ chats to other successful men about the business he heads. Who is to know that this ‘John Somes’ is an imposter whose real name is Terriss? It is a risky game but an intoxicating one and it has a dramatic effect on the family fortunes. Indeed at the end of it all Terriss turns out to have been far more deeply involved in the Milton’s lives that even he knew..”