A familiar figure in Soho's pubs and nightclubs, Julian Maclaren-Ross, with his carnation and silver-topped cane, his fur coat and dark glasses, was a natural bohemian. By the early 1940s he was a celebrated author and was well equipped to provide an anecdotal history of the place that, between the bombs, offered writers and artists a home away from home.

Evoking a demolished era of incendiary bombs and rationing, Maclaren-Ross misses none of it and introduces us to the budding luminaries of the age, among them Dylan Thomas and Graham Greene.

"An entertaining portrait of a wartime London seldom shown, together with six of the author's best stories." (B-O-T Editorial Review Board)