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Fay Weldon - Author

About the Author

Fay Weldon is one of Britain's best loved and most respected authors. Novelist, playwright and screenwriter Fay Weldon was born on 22 September 1931. She was brought up in New Zealand and returned to the United Kingdom when she was ten. She read Economics and Psychology at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, and worked briefly for the Foreign Office in London, then as a journalist, before beginning a successful career as an advertising copywriter. She gave up her career in advertising, and began to write full-time. Her first novel, The Fat Woman's Joke, was published in 1967. Fay Weldon is a former member of both the Arts Council literary panel and the film and video panel of Greater London Arts. She was Chair of the Judges for the Booker Prize for Fiction in 1983, and received an honorary doctorate from the University of St Andrews in 1990. She was awarded a CBE in 2001. She lives in Dorset with her husband, the poet Nick Fox.

 

Author photo © Alex Baker

 

Fellow novelist SOPHIE KING on FAY WELDON

Fay Weldon got me through my teenage years and my twenties. I don't know what I would have done without her naughty, feisty heroines. I normally prefer the close third person narrative but her authorial voice is so wicked that it has a delicious character in its own right.

Featured books by Fay Weldon

Death of a She Devil

Death of a She Devil

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Hardback Release Date: 06/04/2017

'The women of the world gave up romance, subservience and submission, and once empowered, took to hard work, truth and reality. Much good has it done them.' Ruth Patchett, the original She Devil, is now eighty-four and keen to retire. But who can take up her mantle? Enter Tyler Patchett, our new kind of heroine and Ruth's grandson. He's an ultra-confident, twenty-three-year-old man: beautiful, resentful and unemployed. In Fay Weldon's 1983 classic, The Life and Loves of a She Devil, women fought men for power and won. In 2017, men take a decisive step to get their power back...

ebook of the month
Mischief Fay Weldon Selects Her Best Short Stories

Mischief Fay Weldon Selects Her Best Short Stories

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Hardback Release Date: 12/02/2015

'She's a Queen of Words' CAITLIN MORAN. 'One of the great lionesses of modern English literature' HARPER'S BAZAAR. 'Readable, articulate and fascinating' THE SCOTSMAN. 'Outrageously funny' DAILY EXPRESS. 'Sharp, witty, incisive' THE TIMES. 'Wise, knowing, forthright' INDEPENDENT. Reviewers have been describing Fay Weldon's inimitable voice for years. Now, here is Fay Weldon in her own words. Choosing and and introducing twenty-one of her favourite short stories written throughout her fifty year career as one of Britain's foremost novelists. Included as a bonus is a new novella, The Ted Dreams, a ghost story for the age of cyber culture, big pharma, and surveillance.

Long Live the King

Long Live the King

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/09/2013

1902: London Society is in a frenzy of anticipation for the coronation of the new king, Edward VII. The Earl and Countess of Dilberne are caught up in the lavish preparations, yet Lady Isobel still has ample time to fret. Her sixteen-year-old niece, Adela, tragically orphaned, has run off with a troupe of fake spiritualists; her plain yet clever daughter, Rosina, is threatening to elope to Australia - of all places - and her new daughter-in-law is pregnant with a potential heir, yet still completely untrained in the particular ways of the English aristocracy. With her trademark joie de vivre, Fay Weldon once again draws her readers into the lives and loves of the aristocratic Dilberne family, as they embrace not only a new century, but a new generation - a generation with somewhat radical views...

ebook of the month

Other books by Fay Weldon

Love & Inheritance - Box Set

Love & Inheritance - Box Set

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 01/11/2013

Fay Weldon brings an aristocratic Edwardian household to fabulous, exuberant life in her Love and Inheritance Trilogy, set over five years at the turn of the nineteenth century.The Dilberne family lurch from diamond-studded tea gowns to bankruptcy and back again, their fortunes dependent on steam-powered automobiles, Spiritualist gatherings and Christmases at Sandringham. But as the century turns, the rigid rules of society are beginning to soften. Can Lady Isobel survive without three ladies' maids? Will her obstinate daughter Rosina give up Votes for Women once she's married off? And has the vulgar Minnie truly won Viscount Arthur's heart?

Long Live the King

Long Live the King

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/09/2013

1902: London Society is in a frenzy of anticipation for the coronation of the new king, Edward VII. The Earl and Countess of Dilberne are caught up in the lavish preparations, yet Lady Isobel still has ample time to fret. Her sixteen-year-old niece, Adela, tragically orphaned, has run off with a troupe of fake spiritualists; her plain yet clever daughter, Rosina, is threatening to elope to Australia - of all places - and her new daughter-in-law is pregnant with a potential heir, yet still completely untrained in the particular ways of the English aristocracy. With her trademark joie de vivre, Fay Weldon once again draws her readers into the lives and loves of the aristocratic Dilberne family, as they embrace not only a new century, but a new generation - a generation with somewhat radical views...

ebook of the month
Long Live the King

Long Live the King

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 07/05/2013

From the award-winning writer of the original Upstairs Downstairs-the second novel in an irresistible trilogy about an Earl's family and his servants at the turn of the twentieth century. As 1901 comes to an end, there is much to be grateful for: The Dilberne fortune has been restored, and the grand Dilberne Court, with its one hundred rooms, has been saved. Lord Robert's son, Arthur, is happily married to Chicago heiress, Minnie, who is pregnant and trying to come to terms with her new role as lady of the manor, and her charming but controlling mother-in-law, Lady Isobel. As Lord Robert and Lady Isobel get caught up in the preparations of the coronation of Edward VII, they debate the future of their recently orphaned niece, Adela. Isobel and Minnie want to take her in; Robert and Arthur do not. While they argue, Adela runs away and joins a travelling group of spiritualists and has a life-saving run-in with the king. With Long Live the King, Fay Weldon continues the magnificent trilogy that began with Habits of the House. As the award-winning writer for the pilot episode of the original Upstairs Downstairs, Weldon brings her deservedly famous wit and insight to this novel of love and desire, morals and manners.

Long Live The King

Long Live The King

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/2013

December 1901: With London Society in a frenzy of anticipation for the coronation of the new king, Edward VII, the Earl and Countess of Dilberne are caught up in lavish preparations. Yet Lady Isobel still has ample time to fret, and no wonder with a new heir on the way, an elopement, family tragedy, a runaway niece, and a gaggle of fraudulent spiritualists to contend with... With her trademark joie de vivre, Fay Weldon once again draws her readers into the lives and loves of the aristocratic Dilberne family, as they embrace not only a new century, but a new generation - a generation with somewhat radical views...

Long Live the King

Long Live the King

Author: Fay Weldon Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/04/2013

December 1901: With London Society in a frenzy of anticipation for the coronation of the new king, Edward VII, the Earl and Countess of Dilberne are caught up in lavish preparations. Yet Lady Isobel still has ample time to fret, and no wonder with a new heir on the way, an elopement, family tragedy, a runaway niece, and a gaggle of fraudulent spiritualists to contend with... With her trademark joie de vivre, Fay Weldon once again draws her readers into the lives and loves of the aristocratic Dilberne family, as they embrace not only a new century, but a new generation - a generation with somewhat radical views...

3 Great Historical Novels

3 Great Historical Novels

Author: Fay Weldon, Kylie Fitzpatrick, Sarah Quigley Format: eBook Release Date: 11/03/2013

Here are three great historical novels in one volume. HABITS OF THE HOUSE: Fay Weldon takes us inside an aristocratic household -- upstairs and downstairs -- in the last three months of the nineteenth century. Tea gowns are still laced with diamonds; there are still nine courses at dinner, but bankruptcy, war and social unrest loom. THE SILVER THREAD: London, 1840. A young woman boards a prison ship bound for the other side of the world. Weaving death, love and adventure, The Silver Thread is plotted like a murder mystery, but narrated with the skill and style of a literary storyteller. THE CONDUCTOR: Winter, 1941. The story of how Shostakovich and one valiant, bedraggled orchestra created a defining moment in the siege of Leningrad - the bloodiest seige in history - is a gripping testament to the life-affirming power of music.

Habits of the House

Habits of the House

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 15/01/2013

From the award-winning novelist and writer of Upstairs Downstairs, the launch of a brilliant new trilogy about what life was really like for masters and servants before the world of Downton AbbeyAs the Season of 1899 comes to an end, the world is poised on the brink of profound, irrevocable change. The Earl of Dilberne is facing serious financial concerns. The ripple effects spread to everyone in the household: Lord Robert, who has gambled unwisely on the stock market and seeks a place in the Cabinet; his unmarried children, Arthur, who keeps a courtesan, and Rosina, who keeps a parrot in her bedroom; Lord Robert's wife Isobel, who orders the affairs of the household in Belgrave Square; and Grace, the lady's maid who orders the life of her mistress.Lord Robert can see no financial relief to an already mortgaged estate, and, though the Season is over, his thoughts turn to securing a suitable wife (and dowry) for his son. The arrival on the London scene of Minnie, a beautiful Chicago heiress with a reputation to mend, seems the answer to all their prayers.As the writer of the pilot episode of the original Upstairs, Downstairs-Fay Weldon brings a deserved reputation for magnificent storytelling. With wit and sympathy-and no small measure of mischief-Habits of the House plots the interplay of restraint and desire, manners and morals, reason and instinct.

Sacred Cows

Sacred Cows

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 13/09/2012

In 1989, after the Ayatollah Khomeini declared a fatwa against Salman Rushdie for writing The Satanic Verses, Fay Weldon published Sacred Cows, a pamphlet critical of the fundamentalist interpretation of the Koran. Weldon s pamphlet received a lot of attention on publication mostly criticism of her perceived Islamophobia but Weldon set out to enforce the notion that no religion should have the right to issue threats and intimidation; no religion should hinder free expression. In Sacred Cows, Weldon criticizes all aspects of British society Murdoch and the Sun s page 3 girls; white, liberal complacence; problems with education and the NHS and argues that the affront to Muslim people in Britain was not caused by publication of The Satanic Verses itself but rather by the awfulness of the society we have allowed to grow up around us . The Satanic Verses is remedy, according to Weldon, to a fractured, ailing society. Publishing literature like this proves that our society may yet be well and our brave new God of individual conscience may yet arise .Originally published by Chatto & Windus as part of the 'Chatto Counterblasts' strand, this ebook edition is reissued with a new introduction by the author, as part of the Brain Shots series: the pre-eminent source for high quality, short-form digital non-fiction.

Love and Friendship

Love and Friendship

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 11/09/2012

Only single-volume edition available of this exciting dramatic early novella which is an unknown work for Jane Austen's many fans. Written in a series of letters to the daughter of a friend, Love and Friendship tells of a young girl's path to betrayal, by way of a seemingly ecstatic marriage.

Cloning of Joanna May

Cloning of Joanna May

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 07/07/2011

An astonishing audiobook that probes into the strange world of genetic engineering. Joanna May thought herself unique, indivisible - until one day, to her hideous shock, she discovered herself to be five: though childless she was a mother; though an only child she was surrounded by sisters young enough to be her daughers - Jane, Julie, Gina and Alice, the clones of Joanna May. How will they withstand the shock of first meeting? And what of the avenging Carl, Joanna's former husband and the clones' creator: will he take revenge for his wife's infidelity and destroy her sisters one by one?In this astonishing novel, Fay Weldon weaves a web of paradox quite awesome in its cunning. Probing into the strange world of genetic engineering, The Cloning of Joanna May raises frightening questions about our identity as individuals - and provides some startling answers. Funny, serious, revolutionary, this is the work of a master storyteller at the height of her powers.

Life and Loves of a She-Devil

Life and Loves of a She-Devil

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 07/07/2011

The fantasy of the wronged woman made real: wild funny and true. "e;The fun grows steadily blacker and wilder."e; The GuardianWhen Ruth Pratchett discovers her husband is having a passionate affair with the lovely romantic novelist Mary Fisher, she is so seized by envy she becomes truly diabolic, embarking on a course of destruction which brings those around her their just deserts and herself an amazing reward. This is the fantasy of the wronged woman made real: wild, funny, true.

Affliction

Affliction

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 07/07/2011

A novel about the perfect pair - or are they?Annette and Spicer make a perfect pair: he thirty-nine, wide-shouldered, square-jawed, and often likened to Harrison Ford; she slight, fair, delicately featured, and sometimes likened to Meryl Streep. He with a son (Jason, eleven) from a previous marriage, she with a daughter (Susan, thirteen) from a ditto. He and she, after ten years, expecting their own baby. But on this, the first day of the rest of their blissful lives, Spicer fails to kiss Annette goodbye as he leaves for the office.

Splitting

Splitting

Author: Fay Weldon Format: eBook Release Date: 07/07/2011

How many women can you fit into one body? A novel of split personalities. A marriage, its breakdown, and a perforated heroine: one woman, many faces, many personalities, and more emerging: a crumbling house, and the rooms of that house (which in our dreams are aspects of the self). Any more trauma and it's all over!Sir Edwin Rice has decided to divorce Lady Angelica, ex-rock star. She has behaved intolerably. He petitions the Court to set him free. Angelica fights back. She is not what he thinks - but then what woman ever is? Angelica takes a job as secretary to her husband's divorce solicitor - only to find one false personality leading to another. How is she to find herself: amongst good wife Angelica, Angel the tart, Jelly the secretary, all-male Ajax, Angela the hopeless - and only one body, albeit a beautiful one, to go round between the lot of them?