Somehow, there was a leak at BeWrite Books of Slip-Up’s international release date on April 29 and the Windsors’ wise advisers plotted, behind gilded doors at Buckingham Palace, to scheme an extravagant diversion. Money was no object, and Wills and Kate received a royal command to tie the knot to coincide and present a blushing bride rather than a blushing Queen.
This is why:
In 1963 President John F Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Martin Luther King told racially-divided America, ‘I have a dream’, the notorious Alcatraz island prison closed, Beatlemania screaming gave the world a headache when the Fab Four from Liverpool released their first album, Please Please Me ...
And Ronnie Biggs and a masked – but unarmed – gang of jokers pulled off the biggest multi-million heist in history – the Great Train Robbery. Arguably the greatest insult to the royal family since Charles I met a sticky end on the chopping block.
Yup, they raided the Royal Mail and toted off sacks stuffed with banknotes (each carrying a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II). OK, Her Majesty’s Police eventually rounded up the gang and the Great Train Robbers were sent to jail for a long, long time. The bulk of their royal loot was never recovered.
But the fun really began when Biggs, with twenty-eight years of his sentence still to serve, staged a breath-taking break from one of Her Majesty’s most 'secure' prisons, went on the run and became the world's most wanted man. He also became a folk hero as, time and again, he gave Scotland Yard’s crack squad the slip all over the globe.
As HM's police farce gave the public mounting glee, it was crack newspaper reporters from the world press hub, London’s Fleet Street, who tracked him down in Australia and again in Brazil, returning with world scoops, while Scotland Yard’s top men returned hapless, empty-handed and red-faced to ridicule.
One would not have been amused, it is safe to assume.
For thirty-six years, ‘Biggsy’ lived high on the hog in Rio de Janeiro, laughing along with his countless millions of fans, basking in glory, and untouchable in a country with no extradition treaty. He sported beauties on his arm at lavish parties where champagne and caviar went down in celebration like tea and doughnuts at gloomy police station inquests into their failures. His smiling face was on tee-shirts – every bit the icon Che Guevara had become by then. He recorded songs and flouted his glamour-life freedom in world media ... as plodding Scotland Yard blushed and blundered.
A major BBC film of the book was hastily blocked by the man in charge of the chase – the famously infamous Slipper of the Yard (unkindly referred to in some circles as ‘Slip-Up of the Yard’) – when he threatened legal action; not because of any inaccuracy in Delano’s work, but because he claimed the actor portraying him went too far in caricaturing him as a clown.
This is the very first digital edition of the book that became Biggsy’s own favourite (that's him reading it in fun, sun and shorts below), had Biggsy fans in stitches, and is an embarrassment to The Queen’s Finest to this day. It will become your favourite, too.
And that’s why, we strongly suspect, the House of Windsor is so desperately trying to make a right royal cover-up of Slip-Up with pomp, ceremony and a bonus day-off for British workers. Factor in lost production and Weddingate will cost the country billions. Ronnie's gang's cost to the country was petty cash by comparison. And the BeWrite Books ebook edition is the price of a pint or two in real money.
Regardless of royal wrath, the ebook is today now available at all the usual ebook stores and direct from the bookstore section of the BeWrite Books website (HERE) in all popular digital formats. It is also available in paperback from Revel Barker Publishing (HERE) and at other major online bookstores.
Click on the cover at the BeWrite Books storefront and you can see more about the book and its author, read reviews and download a free chapter.
This is the second in the series of BeWrite Books' ‘hack-lit’ ebook releases in collaboration with RBP … books by ace Old School journalists with massive general and international appeal.
Next up will be The Manacled Mormon, also by Anthony Delano, in June. It’s the inside story of wickedly naughty and outrageously sexy Joyce McKinney’s world famous experiment with kidnapping and bondage. Kinky McKinney is back in the news because of a notorious movie about her sexploits. And there will be more hack-lit releases at pretty regular intervals as time goes on.
Slip-Up was written by Anthony Delano, edited by Revel Barker and produced in all BB ebook formats by Tony Szmuk.