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Lucky Lupin is a poignant yet light-hearted story of survival against the odds, based on Charlie Mortimer’s life with HIV/Aids during the early years (1984-1996), when there was neither treatment nor cure.

Using a combination of good luck, gallows humour, Fray Bentos pies and copious quantities of Solpadeine, Charlie survived not only the illness but the hysteria that accompanied the so-called ‘gay plague’. Anyone infected became a social pariah; had the local launderette got word of his illness they wouldn’t have washed his sheets but burnt them.

Whilst taking full responsibility for the consequences of his behaviour – ‘The fact is you don’t get AIDS from watching telly’ – Charlie initially took to the sofa and prepared for death, but, in time, he found the inner strength required to confront his fatal diagnosis, becoming, among other things, an antiques dealer and contemporary art collector.

With blistering and often hilarious candour Charlie also recounts his childhood where he developed a passion for cars, cultivated by his adventurous mother ‘Nidnod’, his dizzying array of careers and somewhat curious domestic arrangements including the ‘adoption’ of a bank robber for twelve years. He also confronts head on his experiences of coming to terms with confused sexuality, addiction, epilepsy and clinical depression before finding lasting contentment.



Praise for Dear Lupin:

‘As well as being the funniest book I’ve read in ages, it’s also extremely touching. A delight then, on every front.’ The Spectator

‘Very, very funny.’ Sunday Times

‘Wry, trenchant, often extremely funny, but also charmingly forbearing and forgiving.’ Country Life

Reviews

[...] a cast of outlandish relatives and friends with seemingly limitless reserves of black humour
Sunday Times
Mortimer is at his strongest when he talks about lust and obsession....There is graciousness in the way he faces terminal illness
Times Literary Supplement
[Charlie] comes clean or rather dirty about living with HIV in his typically irreverent, self mocking manner. Life affirming stuff
Tatler
[...] one shares [Charlie's] irrepressible sense that it is good to be alive. The wayward son turns out to be somebody one would like to meet, to know and to befriend
Oldie
He [Charlie] recounts repeated spells in rehab and a diagnosis of AIDS in 1986 with an offhand courage that Roger (father) himself might have admired, if not approved
The Mail