Tipping the Velvet
‘Tipping the Velvet’ is a wonderfully lush, sensous and bawdy novel set in the music halls of the late 19th century. Nan gets to meet her heroine, Kitty, a male impersonator. The two begin a double act, and their affection for each other deepens.
Piercing the shadows of the naked stage was a single shaft of rosy limelight, and in the centre of this was a girl: the most marvellous girl – I knew it at once! – that I had ever seen.
‘Erotic and absorbing . . . Written with startling power’ New York Times Book Review
Nan King, an oyster girl, is captivated by the music hall phenomenon Kitty Butler, a male impersonator extraordinaire treading the boards in Canterbury. Through a friend at the box office, Nan manages to visit all her shows and finally meet her heroine. Soon after, she becomes Kitty’s dresser and the two head for the bright lights of Leicester Square where they begin a glittering career as music-hall stars in an all-singing and dancing double act. At the same time, behind closed doors, they admit their attraction to each other and their affair begins.