Ursula Bloom and her Ford

Image from here

I’ve picked up quite a few Ursula Bloom books in charity shops and secondhand over the years and enjoyed them very much. The ones I’ve found have been mainly contemporary romances from the 40s and 50s; they’re light, but amusing and well-written books. Recently Gina of gghost wrote enticingly about collecting her books, and, researching a little, I realised Ursula Bloom literally wrote 100s, getting herself into the Guinness Book of Records at one point for her productivity.

I, naturally, thought “Oh what fun it would be to read more,” but wondered where to start. Gina mentioned she also wrote under the pseudonym Mary Essex and that also rung bells for me. I remembered Simon of StuckinaBook’s excellent description of her novel The Amorous Bicycle and am now inspired to look out for that one and another Mary Essex Gina recommended, Tea Is So Intoxicating. They sound like just my kind of books (fabulous titles too), and she was no where near so prolific writing as Mary Essex which is good news for the non-available free space on my bookcases.

Researching Ursula Bloom a little more I realise how much I’d also like to read her autobiographical books. Best of all I came upon this little promotional film she made for the Ford Motor Company c 1950. She narrates and appears in it looking very elegant indeed, but I also love looking at the fashions and the shoes. This film is obviously made to appeal to women who are either independently wealthy, or whose household income is enough to afford them buying their own car and to be confident and independent enough to drive them. These women’s lives are briefly described (no mention of work, but praise for the way the car makes women so much more mobile so they can enjoy swimming and golfing more), and there’s a comparison of how your grandmother might have been proposed to on a settee, but now it’s more likely that you’ll receive a proposal in a car. There’s also a 4 minute biographical BBC film made in 1974 which is wonderful and shows her huge catalogue of books!

Ursula Bloom and her Ford

Ursula Bloom and her Life

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4 thoughts on “Ursula Bloom and her Ford

  1. I also fell for the covers Gina showed (American editions?) and started researching Ursula Bloom/Mary Essex. Disappointing how expensive many of the books are but well worth hunting for. Oh dear: no room, no room!

    • I know Barbara! I certainly picked up the ones I’ve read in the States so perhaps they were published there as well. Noticed lots of Ursula’s own copies were minus dustwrappers in her bookshelves. Still the hunt will be fun!

  2. Hello! So pleased you found my blog as I’m so pleased to find yours. Love the sound of Tea is intoxicating. Also your previous exhibition post. Hope you have a good week.

    • Thank you that’s very kind. The Mary Essex are now on the top of my list, but they don’t look very easy to find sadly. Maybe it’s been suggested already as a Persephone, but does sound like something they might reprint.

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