Fortune's Spear : The Story of the Blue-blooded Rogue Behind the Most Notorious City Scandal of the 1920s Hardback
Gerard Lee Bevan was the model of an Edwardian swell - arrogant, smooth, well-connected and highly cultured.
He married money and influence - his wife Sophie Kenrick was a cousin of the future prime minister Neville Chamberlain - and over the years he kept a string of showgirl mistresses. But his was a success built on fraud and deception, and eventually Bevan could sustain the fiction no longer.
After a series of desperate swerves, he fled the country on 8 February 1922, abandoning his family and leaving his stockbroking and insurance empire in ruins.
Thus began an extraordinary flight across Europe - disguised as a Frenchman, using a stolen passport, with his mistress at his side.
His subsequent arrest in Vienna, and the Old Bailey trial that followed, would shock the entire country. 'Fortune's Spear' is a parable of the way in which the prospect of easy money draws risk-takers in every era into a spiral of greed and deceit.
Bevan may have been forgotten, but he richly deserves to be remembered.
Drawing on c ontemporary evidence and told with novelistic flair, Martin Vander Weyer's gripping biography brings him vividly to life.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 352 pages, Illustrations
- Publisher: Elliott & Thompson Limited
- Publication Date: 13/10/2011
- Category: True crime
- ISBN: 9781907642319