At a moment when powerful men everywhere are being exposed for their crimes, Celia receives an email out of the blue, accusing her ex-husband of committing a rape decades before. She feels compelled to investigate, but where should she even begin? Together with Carly, her millennial colleague at the Harland Herald, she revisits a past she thought she’d left behind, full of partying, drugs and free love. At the time, she’d thought she was at the centre of something - she’d been swept up in the maelstrom of the summer of love - but did she miss something rotten at its core?
Carole Hayman is a Writer, Producer & Presenter. She was born in Kent, which has featured in her trilogy of novels, “The Warfleet Chronicles”. Her early work was with The Bristol Old Vic, The Royal Court and Traverse Theatres, from which she went on to become a founder member and first woman director of the Joint Stock Theatre Company. She was an Associate Director of The Royal Court Theatre, for which she directed many World Premieres.
Carole writes for radio, television and film. On radio, she is well known as writer of the Radio 4 hit series “Ladies of Letters” with Prunella Scales and Patricia Routledge, which has run for twelve series on radio and three series on ITV . She has written many other TV series and films, including The Refuge with Sue Townsend for Channel Four and Rides, the first ever all female TV drama, for BBC1.
The #metoo movement has been the subject of a huge amount of coverage over the last few years, and rightly so - it's a timely and massively important wave of recognition towards the massive power balances that exist in many, many industries - but specifically within the entertainment industry. This is where 'Legacy' takes place, with lead character Celia forced to examine her past as the former wife of a rock star, and to try and piece together hazy memories from a decadent past.
Trying to uncover the truth behind allegations of rape, Celia and her young colleague Carly are forced to uncover shocking truths about the past - and Hayman also uses this as an opportunity to explore the differences in attitudes and experiences between the two - making for a listen that is honest, intriguing, and ultimately, hugely gripping.
This is aided in no small part to Zara Ramm's excellent narration, who brings the characters to life, and embues the slightly unreliable narrator with drive - Celia makes mistakes, but the reader is inevitably on her side.
The whole conceit of the unreliable narrator works wonderfully well here too - with Celia not untrustworthy, more a victim of a past that involved raucous parties and overindulging on intoxicants. Time and time again we have seen women in rape cases disbelieved due to them daring to have a drink or a good time, and this is explored with openness and, completely understandably, a fair degree of rage.
Given the prominence of #metoo in the media, this book could be called 'of the moment', but in truth it's only in recent years that the truth around women being systematically abused and disbelieved has come to true light - so this book isn't 'of the moment' at all - the moment has been happening for hundreds of years, and it's time that more light is shone on it in as many ways as possible. With Legacy - it just so happens that you get a gripping listen at the same time.
Many thanks to MidasPR for the copy of this audible Original book.