Category Archives: The Fortune Seller

Readings for Brando

I was clairvoyant from my first thought, and, as a child, supposed everyone was.

It came as a surprise when I was told I couldn’t know the things I did, and I’d better talk about something else.

When I was 16, my friend Beryl and I hitched through Spain on a marvellous travel of pure freedom. Nearing Andalucía we wanted to find the Flamenco Gypsies who were located in five villages around Seville.

They had never seen ‘on the road’ young girls like us, and I thought our reception could go all ways until the grandmother called for me to come forward and she said that I was ‘the Savia’, the one who sees and knows. She taught me to divine by the signs of nature: the cry of birds; the change of a south wind; the language of the shadow.

Later I did remember the warning of the birds – it saved my life. She also said never read cards on anything but a wooden table – it would absorb the bad energies that might be stirred up by a reading. Later, I learned how to read cards from Myra who owned a dress shop in West Hampstead. She used ordinary playing cards and I recall the sayings: ‘Aces red; a love bed,’ and ‘Two black knaves and a king; not a good thing!’

Many clairvoyants in the sixties learned their trade from Myra. I worked on and off in Hollywood and clairvoyance crept back into my life. I read palms and cards for people in the industry. Through screenwriter Ivan Moffat in the early sixties, I met Marlon Brando, who liked parlour games and became intrigued by cards and their meanings. Ivan disbelieved utterly in clairvoyance, but couldn’t explain how the cards showed a phone call leading to a broken marriage. But it happened and I had seen it. ‘So you have a bad day – why know about it in advance?’ he would say.

Brando did not follow that reasoning and liked readings from the plain cards – not Tarot – especially the old system like ‘the Grand Star’ or ‘the Surprise’.

The word Christian crept up four times in a row, and I thought he’d become religious. But he’d met Christian Marquand, the French actor/director– and he called his first son after him. Later my first son was called Christian, and much later Roy Scheider, the actor from Jaws, choose Christian for his first son.

When I next met Brando in 1966 – during the filming of A Countess from Hong Kong, directed by my father-in-law, Charles Chaplin – he had come to the end of the first part of his career and was in a dip that he could not have foreseen. Even the exotic women around him who could forecast aspects didn’t get that one. Regarding my card readings for him in Alvaros (the restaurant in London’s Chelsea where the famous went to eat in the sixties), I remember two things: one, an island which he would reach, and, two, that his career would come up, bigger than ever. Even I thought it was unlikely as he went on to make a few, as he said, ‘bow-wows’, like Candy for Marquand.

But then came The Godfather and he didn’t look back. And he did buy an island! From clairvoyance I went on to transformation, which lead to The Portal, and that is the beginning of privilege.

Marlon Brando

My latest novel, The Fortune Seller, explores the world of clairvoyance and card reading in detail. Find out more…

The Fortune Seller

Patterns in the Ether

[The following is taken from The Fortune Seller.]

Against a background of night-time fusion between the city and other realms, I spoke to the lonely looking for love; a new life, magic, their deceased partners. Some needed to talk, others to be cheered up. Was there really a spirit guide out of sight with all the answers? I certainly hoped so because I was a little short in that department.

Then I got three women in a row with the hots for their handymen, and each man putting in a new kitchen. Was it the same with another room or did this nurturing area provoke unsuitable passion? Each woman believed her handyman was in love with her, but the man felt unworthy to say so or shy or worried about his marriage, or hers. I heard about molten, hot eye contact as he installed the oven, the fact he was available at any hour, the energy between them more electric than anything he was putting in that kitchen. Personally I thought in each case the handyman would do pretty well anything to keep the money coming in and if it took molten hot looks they’d be provided. Then I got three women on the trot, all called Frances.

I had to admit there were patterns out there in the ether. I thought it was the guides’ way of playing a joke. The only problem – I had no idea of the guides.

The Fortune Seller

How To Disappear

How easy is it to drop out of sight? By the very act of hiding you draw attention from neighbours and curious friends and otherwise. Money helps. Unless money is part of it and you need to make some to stay unseen. The two-hit singer in my book, The Fortune Seller, said she had to disappear. She was suddenly out of fashion – crashed – but her good life habits were the last to go and she was in debt. She needed obscurity to reinvent herself. She couldn’t take any usual form of work because she was still recognisable.

She discovered that the best way of hiding was to become a chameleon; fitting into an unseen line of work that gave her an identity rarely questioned. A night psychic on the telephone. It couldn’t be more perfect.

You answer the phone, give a tarot reading to a stranger. You are paid by the minute and, if lucky, it pays the rent. You learn to attune to people. You see with your ears. No-one ever sees you  not even the employer. Your voice is all you need and a photograph of someone not you for the ads. You do the employment agreement on the phone and are accepted because of the way you sound. No one knows what you’ve done or where you live. You learn to know people by their voice and what they don’t say. If you pick up enough psychic skills you’re in. You’re safe. Only one obstacle left. Fate. A client recognised the singer’s voice and it almost hit the tabloids. She dropped the tarot pack and left town. It was said, months later, she was hiding out in mid-America singing in a club.



Review of The Fortune Seller

Alan Glassman has been kind enough to allow me to reprint his recent review of The Fortune Seller here:


If you want a fast, one-night read that will keep you awake and guessing until the end, Patrice Chaplin’s latest novel is the book for you. In her rapid fire, sometimes staccato-like style, Chaplin again gives us a candidate for the silver screen. Set mostly in the London environment she knows so well, we are catapulted to and fro in both time and location questioning where we will go next in the adventures of Jesse, a two-time success as a jazz/pop singer who we now find wanting for money and forced to take a job as a “telephone psychic” – a job that, more often than not, keeps her up into the wee hours, just as we find ourselves in reading this thriller.

Employed by a firm that is not always the most supportive and doesn’t really pay all that well, Jesse’s telephone name becomes “Isis”. And, that name, alone, immediately gives us a sense of the wide knowledge possessed by Chaplin of esoteric subjects – subjects that become all the more prevalent as her story unwinds. Told from Jesse’s/Isis’ point of view, and sharing her emotional roller coaster-ride, the narrative reveals to us some inside understanding of how to conjure up a “punter’s” fortune by such methods as reading Tarot cards, deciphering the meaning hidden in the lines of one’s palm, analyzing astrological symbols, and hypnotism. 

In between contemporary struggles with her finances and her lover, Jesse takes us back to the 1950’s and 60’s as we slowly begin to see the relevance of that era to the drama at hand. For those of us who are, shall we say, a bit “over the hill”, we breathe a bit of nostalgia reading names like Frankie Laine, The Platters singing “Only You”, Helena Rubenstein, Jacques Fath, Coty, Chanel, “La Mer”, Woolworths, “Autumn Leaves”, Johnnie Ray, Mario Lanza, The Ink Spots, Mischa Elman, “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes”, Montgomery Clift, South Pacific, Jean Simmons, Stewart Grainger, Ann Sheridan, and James Mason. For some of us, this is truly a trip back in time.

Chaplin, as always, gives us memorable sentences such as this one describing her protagonist’s lonely predicament: “The silence continued through the blue hour and then I seemed to hear the sound of phones ringing and snatches of conversations running one into another in this night world where truth was as hard to find as the spirit guides on a celestial trail through the heavens.” I believe she has a good feel for what we might call “the guru or spiritual business”. Telling the fake from the real is difficult enough when it comes to solid objects let alone mystical dimensions. 

One visual addition to the text that I would like to see is a simple map of London identifying the locations of some of the many spots Chaplin takes us on our journey: Kentish Town, Primrose Hill, Albert Hall, Jack of Clubs on Brewer Street in Soho, Gloucester Terrace, Dean Street, Hampstead Heath, Kite Hill, Paddington Station, Camden Market Road, the Landmark Hotel on Marylebone Road, Dunollie Road, the Park Lane Hotel, Ronnie Scott’s in Soho, Meard Street, and others. She is obviously familiar with them all, but I am not, and I believe it would add an air of authenticity to the story. After all, she does imply the story is based, if even loosely, on real events.

On the last few pages, Chaplin cleverly ties this novel to her previous two non-fiction offerings: City of Secrets and The Portal. Elmore, a much more experienced “reader”, pointing to the middle card in a hexagram array of cards, tells Jesse:

“ ‘That’s the player. The initiate. But she’s no longer there.’ He indicate[s] the Queen of Diamonds on a lower line further off. ‘So she is moving on and away and when she gets to here…’ he point[s] to the bottom edge, ‘it’s over.’…


[It’s t]he gateway. The portal. To the uninitiated it can look like a cage in a series of reflections.’ He stabbed a finger at the central card. ‘This connects here to there. This reality to other states of being. It’s a passageway. Through this the initiate moves to and fro sending ritual signs….Love, threats, or symbols such as the ladder, the sword, the key, a bird waiting. She can activate the past. This life, another life. It’s an abundant passage and a high initiate can go through the gateway to other realms’….


[The gateway or portal] can be an unmoving location on the planet where the atmosphere or skin of the earth is thin and there are sufficient energy pulses and ley lines. There you can have a gateway from this world to other constellations. It is only visible if the initiate resonates with the energy.’…


But she [the initiate] can sometimes produce this space and time transformation in any locale by her attunement.’ ”

So, to interested readers, I say: Enjoy the book. It’s a fun romp into the mystical. And, additionally, for those who have ears to hear, let them hear. 

Alan Glassman

The Seeing of Happenings Not Yet Happened

In my psychic practice I came to realise over the years that it was impossible to forecast time, but possible to see outside linear time. I decided that it is inadvisable to give seasonal or clock-time forecasts, and instead decided to show how events look in relation to each other.

What is the sense of space between each? When giving a psychic reading the seer is outside of time and leaves his or her personal sense of linear passage and is suspended instead in another experience where predictive imprints are received and happenings not yet happened  and which later are confirmed to have just occurred – are seen.

So, in my present time, these events must be identified as future. They are already there and able to be predicted but is it a future identical to this one that we will meet in this, our everyday journey, or in another dimension altogether? Do these two futures join at a common point? Do we find the answer in sacred geometry?

Or is the answer to be found in Burnt Norton by T. S. Eliott?

Footfalls echo in the memory
Down the passage which we did not take
Towards the door we never opened
Into the rose-garden.

Can a Clairvoyant tell the time? There are no clocks in the spiritual world . . .

I was psychic from the beginning – but thought everyone was.

I didn’t think about it again till my teens. Later I understood that being psychic is working on different dimensions beyond the four we know – and the reader can receive information from elsewhere by seeing, hearing, or sensing.

After some years of practice I get what comes through by seeing and sensing, helped by using touch in psychometry. I am assured of two things:

1.  It is possible to see outside linear time.

2.  It is impossible to give time.

The first essential for the reader, after clearing the aura and covering with protective light from the crown of the head to the soles of feet, is to ‘attune’ which means going into a slightly altered state, just like daydreaming, and then focus on the client or spread of cards and the seeing comes through like an imprint.

It comes from outside, is instantly recordable, and is not made up of a jumble of personal thoughts and imagination. It is clear and different from ordinary thought. You pass that on to the client and the succession of images that may follow – some known, others yet to be proved.

Then comes the question – When?

You used to be able to see a season but that is now more difficult. There are spreads of cards that show past; present; future outcome, and other layouts for the next twelve months – these predictions are mostly changeable as far as our clock and calendar time is concerned. Therefore it is better to qualify a prediction with the admittance that time is difficult to give.

Mr. Right is a common example – he is seen in the reading – clear as a bell – and can’t be far away, surely? Three months later a worried phone call – where is he? I saw Mr. Right accurately for one of my friends. He took twenty years to appear. I conclude it is better to judge time by how events look in relation to each other.

Aleph K – a popular psychic in the 80s – said ‘seeing’ is not watching a TV series; beginning; middle; end. Forget all that. He said, ‘read the events like a map.’ As a church on a map comes just after a hill – we presume these things are close together – others marked in the distance can be years away.  All of what is seen can be coloured by free will, even the fated things. We grow and evolve and the predestined event will be received differently.

In the old days – in shabby bedsits or second hand shops –  the fortune tellers read ordinary playing cards and used the pattern of the spread i.e. two red fours and aces red – a love bed; two jacks and a king – not a good thing!

Eight of swords was always. . . delay.

When I first started I was told by a renowned healer – Harry Edwards – never to give information – just read – of proof of life after death . . .

A psychic told me I would write this book – The Fortune Seller – I didn’t believe it – it took 15 years.


[The above was given as a talk at Atlantis Books Shop 9th June, 2015.]

A New Book

My new book is available today, The Fortune Seller. It is available as an ebook and also a paperback from a variety of online booksellers. 

The book is based on a true story, a supernatural thriller that explores in depth the world of the psychic industry, in particular the night psychics who feed the insatiable demand for brief glimpses into the future. 

Follow Jesse into this night-time world where truth is as hard to find as the spirit guides on their celestial trail through the heavens. 

The Fortune Seller

Find out more.