Put a solemn Englishman into police uniform and thrust him into the crazy world of Keystone Film Studios in 1916 and you have the premise for this novel. The King of Comedy, Mack Sennett, insists on calling the new cop Keystone. But comedy turns swiftly to crime. Shocking things occur that are not in any script – a horrific death on a rollercoaster, a body in a bungalow, the disappearance of a girl, a shooting on a beach.
Keystone the cop gets on the trail. His mission: to find the adorable and much abused blonde actress, Amber Honeybee. The action is threaded through the real stories of silent comedy stars Mack Sennett, Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle and Mabel Normand.
UK Publisher: Macmillan, 1983
US Publisher: Pantheon, 1983
UK Paperback: Arrow, 1984
US Paperback: Pantheon, 1983
UK Paperback: Chivers Black Dagger, 1999
Latest UK Paperback: Sphere, 2014 ISBN 978-0751553567
“For openers on a dreary Sunday, what’s better reading than an offbeat, somewhat screwy yarn? That’s
Keystone, featuring as characters such old-time notables as Chester Conklin, Fatty Arbuckle, Mabel Normand and Mack Sennett, all reunited once again for this delightful tale that revolves dizzily around the gorgeous Miss Honeybee – she spins cartwheels along the beach to show her lovely legs – and her knockabout British admirer.”
Nick Williams, Los Angeles Times
“Top marks for enjoyable charm.”
Felicia Lamb, Mail on Sunday
“A witty fantasy set among real stars of the silent screen … Stylish as ever.”
Francis Goff, Sunday Telegraph