Eccentric Porthmadog author Mike Leaver is to release another original and multi-faceted novel.
His new work, Newspaper Curtains, explores relationships, coercion, homelessness, unrequited love and wider social mores. It’s due to be published on the 28 May.
Mike, 70, lives off-grid in a converted, static truck on a business park in Snowdonia. Like Alan Bennett’s The Lady in the Van, Mike has become a well-known eccentric around his adopted home in Gwynedd.
He is the author of three saga novels – Nork from Nowhere, The Ice Cream Terrorist and Newspaper Curtains, and his Yeti Seeks Mate autobiography. As well as writing Yeti and his first three modern fictions – almost 500,000 words, largely on a battery-powered laptop by candlelight in his lorry – he has just finished penning the second part of his intriguing life story.
In Newspaper Curtains, two teenage girls from opposite sides of the tracks in 1960s Midlands are forced into prostitution in this engrossing tale of loss, liberty, and love.
Weep at the relationship between clever Janet and spoiled Priscilla, as their handsome, young English teacher, Mr Edwards – and his corrupting father – become embroiled in their tortuous journeys.
But then a smart heroine Tara fatefully enters the fray on a secret detective mission.
Dramatic and topical events include a city-slum killing, police malfeasance, newspaper-business bribery, emotional blackmail, destitute homelessness, and a mountaineering adventure.
This saga combines a socio-political struggle by the under-privileged against repression, with both feminine and asexual insights into love, to produce a thought-provoking, yet stylishly old-fashioned, romantic roller-coaster.
Mike said: “This book was born purely from a childish game played by the teenage girls in my school class. I just imagined ‘what if’ and the rest of the story formed from there. Following the launches of my other two novels and my memoir, it’s fair to say that I’m addicted to creative writing and the joy it brings to readers.”