17 December 2009

Selling The Strange One

The Strange One
Fred Bodsworth
London: Sphere, 1979

Stumbled upon a couple of days ago, this very misleading UK cover treatment for Fred Bodsworth's second novel. There's very little passion in this book, and most certainly no "wild love", but what is more curious is the absence of the protagonist. You see, the "Strange One" isn't Kanina Beaverskin, the regrettably named young lady depicted, rather it's a Barnacle Goose. Readers of Bodsworth's 1955 debut, The Last of the Curlews, will not be surprised.

Much more honest is the dust jacket to the first UK edition, published in 1962 by Longmans Green. Here we see our hero in full flight. Kanina's small stature reflects her rather negligible presence in the novel.

An admission: Bodsworth's title always brings lesbians to mind. Those familiar with vintage paperbacks will understand.

Related post: Selling The Nymph and the Lamp


  1. She looks like she's just come from the Monterey Pop Festival and is now back in Canada for the July 1, 1967 celebrations. Kanina Beaverskin - holy cow!

  2. I found a copy of the original UK edition as pictured on my way home from a retreat about The Wild Geese a couple of months ago. I was intriged by the synchronicity of this bookfind at a $1 a book fundraiser. Interesting to see the other cover! I am 64 and grew up in New Zealand with England as the Mother country so the language was familiar. I loved the book albeit you need to allow for 1950's perspectives of first nations ( not doubting that some of them are still alive and well) Another synchronicity - I had just been in hopital with a lady whose husband was from Barra. Just googled to find out more and you are the first site I've visited.