IMPORTANT PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION
It may not have escaped the attention of the more diligent reader that this edition is in fact the second edition, despite being the first to make it into most bookstores. Well, as they say, therein lies something of a tale.
Around eighteen months ago, in August 2007, the first edition of this book was sent to print in a modest run of three thousand copies, although, given the extraordinary public interest in Miss Palmer’s demise, it seemed certain we would be requiring further print runs in time. On August the 27th the book was launched with an extravagant fancy dress party held at Boston’s Four Seasons hotel, and initial copies were shipped out to a select one hundred outlets. Pre-orders via the Amanda Palmer Trust (APT) website had already mounted up considerably, and hence we were about to order the second run. Then, quite unexpectedly, we received a visit from Inspector Ruecker and his team.
Let me be honest: “visit” is a wholly inadequate word to describe the invasion and intimidation that was to follow. All our computers were seized, both private and business; anyone working at the APT headquarters was hand-cuffed and bundled into the back of a police van: we spent a good twenty four hours in and out of cells being questioned, with no real explanation as to why. Finally we were released without charge, pending further investigation, and the computers were eventually returned some four months later. All copies of the first edition were seized bar one hundred and twenty seven that had been bought for cash in bookstores and couldn’t be traced. These have not been returned.
So what was going on? It seems that one of the palmeresques presented in the book, Text Number Nine, bore an extraordinary and incriminating resemblance to the circumstances of Miss Palmer’s actual death, most specifically in various details never released to the public. As is well known the investigation remains open and no one has yet been charged with the crime, nor has the nature of Miss Palmer’s death ever been fully revealed, hence this text, and its connection to the APT itself, constituted major evidence, and thus was not to be published.
I must emphasize that no one connected with the APT has ever been charged, nor implicated in relation to Miss Palmer’s death, however, the following investigation did uncover an extraordinary and disturbing level of corruption within the committee and in particular amongst the editors involved in the preparation and selection of materials for the book, both in the moral and political senses of the word. Needless to say, many resignations were made, and the APT now runs under entirely new management.
One of the new Board’s first tasks was to address the issue of this book. Should it be reprinted with the seized text omitted? Should it be abandoned? Re-edited? However, before any particular approach could be agreed upon a new set of revelations came out with regard to the other nine texts, which resulted in one clear and more easily agreed conclusion: that the book should be reprinted as a facsimile of the original edition but with the seized text, and any other text deemed sensitive by Inspector Ruecker and his team, blacked out; additionally it should include a substantial appendix which details the true circumstances of its compilation and authorship, and the trail that ultimately led towards Tobias James.
That is the book that you now hold in your hands.
- Read an extract from On the Dancing Death of Amanda Palmer
- Read an extract from On the Aesthetic Decline of the Mock Funeral
- Read an extract from On the Unsung Death of Amanda Palmer
- Read an extract from Appendix V