LOSS OF EDEN: A CAUTIONARY TALE.
BROWN, Douglas, Christopher Serpell.
Published by Faber & Faber,, London,, 1940
Faber & Faber,, London, 1940. Hardback. Condition: fair. Hardback. 8vo. pp 251. Original publisher's yellow cloth, faded lettered red on spine. Utopian fantasy where Britain's under Nazi rule. Spine grubby and foxed, fair; insides clean, good, small owner inscription in ink, library sticker on front.
A cautionary tale, intended to bolster moral in the UK and encourage people to back the war to its conclusion rather than enter into some sort of Faustian pact with the Nazis. It's not an alternate history in the strict sense (it was, after all, written whilst the war was still ongoing and these events - or something similar - could actually have come to pass). The novel is framed by the spectacle of some distant future archaeologist finding an incomplete manuscript which details the gloomy past of the 1940s in Britain. The rest of the novel forms this manuscript and is the account of a New Zealand press correspondent based in London as he watches the British Government sign a ceasefire, and later a mutual cooperation pact, with Nazi Germany following the capitulation of France. What follows is a nightmarish vision of ever increasing Nazi influence in Britain and the complete deconstruction of everything the nation at that time held to be dear (even the supply of tea and tobacco dries up!).
What could have been a dry and difficult text is in fact very readable and falls close enough to the realms of perceived possibility to be engaging and thought provoking.
hard to find in the original hardback edition.