This is a quite lovely, and utterly fascinating, guide to the subject of red hair. Taking in the science of red hair (how it isn’t a regressive gene at all); continuing with the startling facts that red-headed people feel pain more acutely than the rest of us and have their own scent; through how red-headed people have shown their presence in history and are regarded in art. And finally to the current day where hoary old jokes about redheads are called out for their offensiveness, and there are pride marches for red-headed people.
I love this book! It’s a genuinely interesting read, crammed full of information I’d never heard before, all written in a chatty, breezy style which teaches you without you feeling like you’re having a lesson. For such a niche subject (it’s estimated that no more than 6% of the population has red hair, maybe even as low as 4%) the book feels all-encompassing. Taking in thousands of years of history, high art, advertising, science and literature, it remains focused while touching so many bases.
I don’t have red hair myself, although have always had a thing for redheads. These days it’d be fair to say that I have a thing for one redhead – my gorgeous wife. Reading this book and seeing all the wonder that redheads have brought to the world (while suffering abuse for their beautiful hair colour) just makes me feel all the luckier.
I’ve written plenty of fiction about redheads, and to prove that point here’s the cover to the first in my ‘Screen Siren Noir’ series, DIANA CHRISTMAS. Intrigued? You can get your copy here…