Tales of the City
By Armistead Maupin
I had no idea what to expect when I picked it up; I laughed out loud and sniggered, and was shocked, and it made the plane flight home pass so quickly. A great snapshot of different lives in different times, utterly enjoyable.
‘It’s an odd thing, but anyone who disappears is said to be seen in San Francisco.’ Oscar Wilde
Mary Ann is twenty-five and arrives in San Francisco for an eight-day holiday.
But then her Mood Ring turns blue.
So obviously she decides to stay. It is the 1970s after all.
Fresh out of Cleveland, naive Mary Ann tumbles headlong into a brave new world of pot-growing landladies, cut throat debutantes, spaced-out neighbours and outrageous parties. Finding a job as a secretary at an ad agency, Mary Ann wants to start her own life, away from her parents and with the flower-power freedom to make her own friends and her own decisions.
The saga that ensues introduces vignettes that are manic, romantic, tawdry and touching – unmistakably the handiwork of Armistead Maupin.