The Rag Dolls
Corgi, London, 1970
price: 6/- (30p); 320 pages
(first published by Souvenir Press, 1968)
To my sister, with love, and to the fashion business, with a mixture of love and hate
The blurb on the back:
When Youth Power causes a fashion revolution in Britain, the kids trample each other underfoot in the rush to make it as a fashion-designer, model, or boutique owner.
Caroline and Rupert Walker, dubbed 'Mr and Mrs Fashion' by the press, are two who have made it. At a price. With Julian, Caroline's too-handsome brother, they make up The Rag Dolls.
But then the so-called glamour begins to turn sour. Caroline cannot get to grips with the empty, unfeeling life of London's 'dolly people', for whom love is a four-letter word; sex just another way to pass the time. She watches with horror her brother's affair with a homosexual pop-star, who mixes drugs and sex in a disastrous recipe for kicks....
The Rag Dolls digs behind the scenes of the kinky boutiques of Chelsea and looks at the live-now, regret-later morals of London's youth with an honesty and frankness to match its subject.
Tonight. The word brought a stab of sickness to Caroline’s stomach.
Simply awful. Every cliché you can think of concerning fashion, the Sixties and rock & roll all thrown together with no respect for characterisation, plotting or wit. And not even entertaining in its dreadfulness.
Simon Cooper, incidentally, is said to be 'the pseudonym of a young writer who has had first-hand experience of the fashion world'. Anyone know who he was?
ARTISTIC MERIT: 1/5
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: 1/5
HIPNESS QUOTIENT: 2/5
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