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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mars and Venus... according to Fanny by Gaslight

Although I did not give Michael Sadleir’s 1940 novel Fanny by Gaslight the most glowing review, it does have its moments. The following is one of my favourites. Step forward Fanny Hooper, woman of the world:

“This experience of males in the rough taught me an invaluable lesson, thanks to which I have always been able to make friends with any man I have wanted to be friends with. It taught me never to disapprove on principle, and to prefer a man to behave in my presence as he naturally behaves when he is happy. If that involves swearing and getting drunk, then let him swear and drink. You can always tell when a man is talking dirt and drinking too much in order to show off, or to nerve himself for something, or because he despises you and is purposely bad-mannered in order to underline his contempt. I have known that sort of thing only too often, and very disagreeable it is. But most men have some genuine and individual line of relaxation, and a woman, if she likes a man well enough, does well to let him follow it”.

(From Part 1 Chapter 3)


  1. I see they made a movie from the book. I can't believe I haven't heard of it, being a 1930-40s movie lover.

  2. Hi Grad - yes they did although I have never found it. I have done a bit of research and think that they played seriously fast and loose with the book plot though...
    Bon weekend,