Jump to content


Sing Holiday

  • Please log in to reply
1 reply to this topic

#1 ry6

  • Member

  • 523 posts
  • Joined: October 00

Posted 06 October 2002 - 17:44

I was recently told that in 1937 a novel called "Sing Holiday" was published by Arthur Barker (Baker?) and written by Peter Chamberlain.

It was about motor racing and those involved with the "sport".

Evidently the motor clubs and motor magazines in Britain called for the book to be withdrawn from bookshelves as it cast racing in a bad light because of debauchery, recklessness, womanising etc.

Maybe, looking back, the book was pretty tame by 2002 standards, but can anyone shed any light on the fate of the book?


#2 Pete Stowe

Pete Stowe
  • Member

  • 476 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 07 October 2002 - 19:28

It was published by Arthur Barker Ltd in London in 1937, it may also have been published in the USA.
I can remember some years ago Bill Boddy mentioning the book in Motor Sport, and that it had created a stir when published. Rather than people being concerned about it bringing motorsport into disrepute I got the impression that some people were perhaps more worried that they might be recognisable as the fictional characters and various scandals might be brought further out into the open than they would like. The authors note at the beginning is at pains to emphasise (perhaps after legal advice?) that it has no foundation in fact, and none of the characters is intended to represent any person. However I believe that Chamberlain was a motoring journalist, and he does demonstrate an understanding of motor racing - the action being set around fictional races in the Isle of Man - so it’s quite possible that his fictional account of what went on in the English racing ‘crowd’ was closer to reality than was the contemporary general perception.
I have to say though that the first 100 pages - the first quarter, before it gets onto the motor racing - have to be the most mind-numbingly dull that I’ve ever read anywhere, so I would have thought that all self-respecting authors of the time would also have been calling to have it banned :lol: