The Hayseed Chronicles
It has arrived. After protracted dealings with The Strand’s collectables department in New York, it has finally arrived.
The extraordinary success of The Hayseed Chronicles in the mid-Eighties was largely down to one woman, Laurie Clow. It is believed that coincidence and chance led her to be by Arthur’s side on that fatal Soho morning and since then she decided to dedicate her life to his books.
On returning to America she achieved fame and national syndication reading the Chronicles on the radio, before crossing over to the big-time with her own chat-show. She singlehandedly brought the books to life for a generation of Americans and with hysteria at fever pitch The Carter Press was quick to cash in on their recently acquired pop culture cachet.
Graham Carter, sensing an opportunity, produced a limited run of this box set to tie in with the programme and marketed during the credits at the show. I have been trying to get my hands on one of these for years.
But there is more. Stuffed in the back of the box was this letter.
Susie is thanking Jeanie for sending her the entire set. This set, which has found its way from sunny California to London via the 18 miles of books at the Strand in New York. The letter is printed on Hayseed Chronicles notepaper (extensive merchandising was another shrewd idea from Mr Carter).
Bees hold a special significance in the world of the Hayseed Chronicles as both a terrifying sign that Mr Toppit had been there as well as a sign of Luke’s bravery in the face of such terror.
I wonder what Susie and Jeanie are doing now. If you are out there, reading this, let me know!