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Liquor, Lust, and the Law: The Story of Vancouver's Legendary Penthouse Nightclub Paperback – Oct 15 2012
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There's an old line from pantomime: 'Infamy! Infamy! They've got it all ... Infamy.' Everyone from the Liquor Control Board to the Police, morally tight-assed politicians, pimps, and the occasional small-time hood had it in for the Penthouse. But it survived and continues to survive because it did something simple well: it served up sin stylishly. This book tells the dramatic and sometimes tragic story of a remarkable family, their storied venue, and a multi-generational campaign to keep the 'fun' in Vancouver.
John Belshaw, co-author of Vancouver Noir
(John Belshaw 2012-11-04)
Chapman brings out all the glory and dirt of this fabled oasis of sin, covering visits in the 1950s and '60s by such giants as Duke Ellington and Nat King Cole, as well as later run-ins with the vice squad and, most notorious, the murder on the premises of the Penthouse's patriarch, Joe Phillipone, in 1983.
Georgia Straight (Georgia Straight 2012-11-29)
The book pulls no punches in exploring the sometimes seamy side of city history, painting a picture of vice squads, con men and meddling politicians. Featuring period photographs and newly unearthed police documents plus many previously untold stories.
InsideVancouver.ca (InsideVancouver.ca 2012-12-03)
Chapman does an excellent job demonstrating the inextricable relationship between the notorious establishment and the family that poured their heart and soul into it.
Scout Magazine (Scout Magazine 2012-12-03)
Aaron Chapman is a wonderful storyteller and he recounts the tales of celebrity high-jinks and police raids with glee. Yet what struck me most was Chapman's touching portrayal of the Filippone family. A third-generation Italian-Canadian family that has battled, worked, loved and persevered together. This is a remarkable case study on the Italian community in Vancouver and a delightful read.
Will Woods, Founder, Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours (Will Woods 2012-12-19)
Aaron Chapman's lively history is written in razzle-dazzle journalistic prose.
Quill and Quire (Quill and Quire 2013-01-14)
Up to now, local venue histories have not been in great supply. Should they become a trend among British Columbia historians, Aaron Chapman's Liquor, Lust and the Law may be seen as a pioneering effort ... Chapman depicts, almost tenderly, the phoenix-like rebirth of the Penthouse.
BC Studies (BC Studies 2013-01-17)
The Penthouse deserves a central role in the dark side of the city's history because of the attempt to shut it down in 1975. Chapman tells the story well in this nostalgia-inducing book, well illustrated with photos from the club's "lost" collection.
Daniel Francis, author-historian (Daniel Francis 2013-07-09)
About the Author
Aaron Chapman is a writer, historian, and musician with a special interest in Vancouver's entertainment history. He is the author of Liquor, Lust, and the Law, a history of the Penthouse Nightclub, and Live at the Commodore, a history of the Commodore Ballroom that won the Bill Duthie Booksellers' Choice Award (BC Book Prizes) in 2015. He lives in Vancouver.
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