Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Michelle Parker and George Clooney seen at book launch

Here she is, Legion of Fans, the real Michelle Parker who took the brave step of requesting that her name be used not as a minor character, but as the leading lady in my new book, Safari.

Brave, because I warned her in advance what usually happens to leading ladies in my books. And happen it does, to heroic wildlife researcher MP – in a variety of locations, from Zimbabwe to the Democratic Republic of Congo (raise your minds from the gutter, Legion of Fans – I’m talking about being shot at, of course!).

Michelle, clearly not as inebriated as me, is pictured here at the launch party, held in the sumptuous Hippo Lounge of the Madison Hotel in shabbily chic Surry Hills recently.

Budding professional photographer Andre Moonen did a pretty damn good job snapping a few of the glitterati who attended.

Having learned from previous launches, Mrs B and I decided to go short on the food this year (we over catered last year) and long on the booze (in recognition of all of the lushes – ourselves included – who complained that the free drinks ran out far too early).

My very good friends at The Classic Safari Company once again stepped up to the plate, providing an elephantine safari travel bag as a lucky door prize.

One of my military comrades, let’s call him His Excellency Lieutenant Colonel Leonardo (named after the lion, not the actor), picked up the prize. LTCOL Leo, a shy retiring type, is a veteran of many foreign wars and had occasion to visit several Southern African nations in the past. In fact, I think he is still wanted in some of them.

The evening was a veritable Organisation of African Unity, Legion of Fans, although unlike the OAU we existed in harmony and solved Zimbabwe’s woes over several beers. There were South Africans, Zimbabweans, a Kenyan, and representatives of most of the former colonial powers.

There was a star-studded line up of top international authors, including chick-lit queen Di Blacklock, and shoot-em-up, action-adventure king David A. Rollins. My good mate Peter Watt sent his apologies as he is currently on the hustings promoting his new book, The Stone Dragon.

Jane, 22.9, (she's on the right in the picture, looking very bookish in her new glasses) was ably assisted by fellow saleslady Carla, and the pair of them not only met, but exceeded the demanding sales targets I set them. So keen was Jane that she tried badgering my extremely attractive, brainy, single publisher, C, into buying a book. C pointed out that she could pick up a freebie fairly easily.

Now, in the tradition of the gossip page, je pose les questions… (Bec, please correct French)

Why, Legion of Fans, such indignation from which attractive, stylish, well-read, single publisher when it was pointed out to her that to get a ticket in the lucky door prize one had to actually BUY a book?

Which 36-year-old was making moves on which 40-year-old?

Who looked the most like George Clooney at the party?

What was in the beer that made me feel so ill the next day?

Which 22.9-year-old spent most of her time trying to take a new Facebook picture for which PR honcho?

Who was the Sydney Morning Herald journalist who was unable to make the party because he/she was curled up in bed with a naked photographer?

How much champagne had a certain vanilla cigar-smoking PR flak had prior to arriving at the launch?

Who wants to be a bad girl – a very bad girl – in the next book?

How gorgeous did Mrs B look in her new party frock and boots? (Hann, just for you... that's her below in the red and black dress, while I do my best to look shy and retiring).


bec said...

Sorry. My lawyer says it's best if I neither confirm nor deny.

tonypark said...

Thank you so much, Bec, for turning me on to site meter. I can see that certain people have been checking out the blog, but are obviously too chicken to answer les questions...

I know who you are. And I know where you work - your internet server betrays you...

bec said...

... neither confirm nor deny, people: let's stick together on this one. He can't prove a thing.

ali g said...

After seeing the picture of Jane & Carla it all comes back to me how I found when I got home that I'd bought 50 copies of Safari

ali g said...

Oh and Mrs g thinks you're much better looking than George.

trev said...

2nd last question...how about Carla?

Muriel said...

Aaargh, I hate missing a good party. And it looks VERY good. And I've always wanted to rub shoulders (heh-heh) with Gorgeous George. Any chance you could hold your next launch in a certain very tiny village in the Western Cape, SA?

My float said...

Hey, no pictures of me?

(Sorry I couldn't come - in the end the moving business and a sick child conspired to keep me home. Seeing those pix makes me realise I should have postponed the move and called in the grandparents!!)

Greatest of luck with book sales.

Hann said...

Pick me, pick me! LOL. It will be fun to see what you can come up with this time.
Oh darn, still no (proper) pic of Mrs. B! Unfair :-( (see curly pouty lip).

I love site meter, had one on my previous blog and spent hours just checking every one's details out.

The launch looks great, also now sorry we couldn't have made it ... also next time! Hey I'll e-mail you dad's phone number if you guys get stuck in SA and need a hand or place to rest your heads.