As much as I loved ‘Kiss Myself Goodbye’ (Bloomsbury), Ferdinand Mount’s brilliant, sad, funny family memoir, the Georgie Mount/Georgie Johnson that emerged from its pages was a tragic, beautiful ruin. I knew another Georgie entirely – for over 40 years. And the one I knew overcame the damage, cruelty and lack of love that characterised her formative years. Here is my impression of the book – and an explanation of where my memories deviate from it.  Alternatively, you can click on the photograph below.

Georgie Johnson, West Halkin Street, London, 1970 (Photo: Hugh Donovan)



  1. Hi Charles, just to let you know that I am a reader who you’d like ‘also to meet my Georgie, the sparkling, smiling, caring, loyal, life-loving, and generous friend’, after reading Kiss Myself Goodbye. I enjoyed your portrait of Georgie, and agreed with the important points you made about context – I only discovered after reading the book the previous occupation of the author. All the best from someone else’s ‘Godmother.’

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