My new book on Switzerland comes out in November from Nicholas Brealey
In the summer of 1816 paparazzi trained their telescopes across Lake Geneva on poets Byron and Shelley - and their womenfolk. Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein. Byron penned The Prisoner of Chillon. Together they put little Switzerland on the literary map.
Behind the pristine facade of the gilded chalet writers often found dry rot. From Conan Doyle to Le Carré, Davos to Dürrenmatt, Hesse to Highsmith – three centuries of writers scratched their names on the woodwork.
Lederhosen and Lepidoptera, spas and spies, fool’s gold and numbered accounts: The Gilded Chalet has it all.
Literary detective work and treasure chest, history and scandal, The Gilded Chalet will make you strap on your skis and go off-piste to find out for yourself.
The cover shows the Grand Hotel in Davos from a 1905 poster by Hans Eggimann (1872 - 1929), a Bernese painter and illustrator who studied at Dresden and the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He committed suicide by throwing himself off the Kirchenfeld bridge in Berne.