A true to life tale of life in Salford in the fifties and sixties
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Harry and Laura first met during the late autumn of 1942. Harry was a Staff Sergeant and one of the many Americans stationed in the United Kingdom during the Second World War. Laura was a young housewife and mother whose husband was serving in the British Army. Harry and Laura embarked on a lengthy and passionate adulterous affair which resulted in my illegitimate birth.
Following the war, Harry returned home to the United States and Laura was divorced by her husband on the grounds of her adultery. Laura later met and had an affair with another man and this relationship resulted in her giving birth to twins. She now had four children to three different fathers and life was a real struggle for her. Eventually, she met someone else - whom she married. However, this marriage was a total disaster and the relationship was one of considerable domestic violence. During most of my childhood, I had to witness my step father beat my mother regularly.
Throughout my life, my mother had refused to tell me anything about my actual father and she even denied the American connection. My older sister used to visit her own father and grandmother regularly but she also refused to tell me anything about my father. I didn't know his name or anything about him.
I grew up in the slums of Salford. I experienced the prevailing social stigma of being the illegitimate son of an American soldier. It was made worse by the fact that my mother had cheated on her soldier husband during wartime. As the years went by, I grew up, got married and raised three children. A spiritualist medium told me the name of my father. This eventually led to me confronting my mother about him. Surprisingly, she now agreed to tell me everything I needed to know. For years she had wanted to tell me but didn't know how to. Her story was sad yet compelling. After hearing it, I knew that I had to try and find him.
With my mother`s agreement, I undertook a three year search to find my father and was eventually successful. He was still alive and wished to see me. I visited the United States and met up with him. He had never married and he had no other children. During my visit with him, he telephoned my mother back in England and invited her to an all-expenses paid visit to see him. Laura had never been on an aeroplane before, she was seventy four years of age but without hesitation, she flew to America to see him. What happened next leaves me breathless even today.
Cast No Stones (fiction)
Kevin Machell (Author)
customer reviews (Yes)
Print List Price: £1.91
Kindle Price: £1.91
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Reviews from Amazon:
This is a brilliant story. I read this book in two days. It was impossible to put it down.
The book was sad, funny with some happy moments. I would recommend it to anyone. Thank you Kevin for writing this wonderful book.
What a fabulous little read.I started reading this book and just couldn't put it down. Kevin has such a story to tell and has told it in such a way that he sends you on a lovely journey of emotions. I was brought up in Salford but i am too young to remember many of the places in the book.It was great to read about places my family have spoken about over the years.
I don't want to spoil the book but you will not believe it.You must read this book. Well done Kevin on this beautifully written memoir.
This book is one of the rare books that has been able to not only keep my attention and enthusiasm, but one that has touched my heart, educated me and left deep felt thoughts for the author and his experiences. Kevin Machell has managed to write an honest, brave and captivating story, that is also true! I am in my early 30's and this book has made me consider my position in society... How lucky I am and how society has developed and progressed.
This book captivated me for many reasons: I am a young Historian with a great interest in social and economic conditions throughout the late 19th century to present day. I have always had a particular interest in the social aspects of each generation, including: living conditions; family relationships; morals; aspirations and class. The concept of class has particularly interested me and how it may have deprived individuals throughout history, including the pro's and con's of modern day society, which has opened a lot of doors and opportunities to the working class.
Wow, if Kevin Machell made such a success of himself regardless of the deprivation and prejudice that he faced, then imagine how different his life would have been and how much more successful a simple, working class Salfordian boy could have been if he was born thirty or forty years later?? Or did his hardship and deprivation make him the man he is today??
You decide. I know I have. Enjoy reading this amazing book. Thank you Kevin Machell for writing your story and being such a strong inspiration to many generations.
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