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Kingdom by the Sea (Essential Modern Classics) (Collins Modern Classics)

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He should be hearing their footsteps any second now, the patter of Mam’s shoes and the crunch of Dad’s hobnailed boots. Looking around the house he sees there is a note left by a family, telling him to enjoy his stay, however long it was. That was all Harry had time to notice; he had his own job; the two objects laid ready in the chair by the door. When a bomb during an air raid destroys Harry's home and kills his family, he knows that he is all alone in the world and has only himself to rely on. Theroux’s account of Northern Ireland in 1982 captures the past of this troubled region and shows how different life was then.

Paul Theroux's round-Britain travelogue is funny, perceptive and 'best avoided by patriots with high blood pressure. Being his usual miserable persona, Theroux doesn't spare the locations he visits and the people he meets just because they happen to be British. But Jack (his son) always said that anyone of ill-will could soon smash a door or a window open, and he'd be in a rage by the time he'd got inside.I have often tried to find the perfect couple of lines to sum up the mixture of joy and apprehension when you get off a train at a little used station and I think Paul Theroux has done it perfectly. The mood by the end is decidedly upbeat - and then Westall decides to bring it all crashing down with a heartbreakingly uncomprimising ending. Written as a children's story, it has some very dark and seriously unpleasant scenes, especially the ending. This is a bleak and flawed landscape, filled with people we fear, people we pity, people we would likely avoid. Getting a meal, sleeping in a haystack - everywhere Harry goes he finds people full of suspicion, ready to turn in a boy on his own.

Their only requests were prayers for them, and to care for the carriage for the next person who would use it. I think part of it was that Theroux comes across as really grouchy, which made my reading less escapist and enjoyable. Shyness made them tolerant, but it also gave them a grudge against foreigners, whom they regarded as boomers and show-offs. Here the author perpetuates an ugly, misguided stereotype by implying that the corporal's brutal behavior is part and parcel of his sexual preference. Outside the carriage, he meets an old man who is a close relative of the family (grandfather), who explains to Harry that the family is no longer alive.Then he thundered downstairs, the crack of light from the kitchen door lighting up the edge of each stair-tread. While I found it interesting to hear what the locals were saying about the military developments, it also made me uneasy and reminded me of current wars and strife and the fearmongering going on right now. He smelt the tar of the boat and it was a nice smell; it was the first thing he’d smelt since the burning gas, and it was a comforting smell. Then there were a couple of parts that crossed quite far into uncomfortable and combined with the jarring, perplexing ending, took this from great to "it's ok" for me.

It was 1982, the summer of the Falklands War and the royal baby, and the ideal time, he found, to surprise the British into talking about themselves. Now that Bob's girlfriend is dead, a vow he once made to her takes on macabre new implications; PW said, ``Westall's tale is good spooky fun--and thought-provoking as well. Together the boy and his new companion leave town and travel up the coast toward the holy island of Lindisfarne. this has always been my favorite of Robert Westall's books, but I didn't appreciate it in as much *wholeness*, reading on and off and knowing what was coming, as I did the first time I read it.

You can change your choices at any time by visiting Cookie preferences, as described in the Cookie notice. The Kingdom by the Sea: A Journey Around Great Britain, originally published in 1983, [4] is the account of a three-month-long journey taken by novelist Paul Theroux around the United Kingdom in the summer of 1982. The Mermaid’s “seduction” works in a different way from Merman’s (which is overtly sexual), but Harry does lift her up, eat her food, sleep in her bed wearing her son’s clothes. One of my all time favourite travel books, Theroux takes his jaded eyes around the coast of Thatcher's Britain at the time of the Falklands conflict. Paul Theroux kann man zugute halten, dass er während seiner Arbeit als Reiseschriftsteller schon viele fremde Orte und deren Einwohner kennen lernt und deshalb daheim Ruhe haben will.

And for those bored of travelling the most travelled and described bit of Europe, Daniel Kalder's Lost Cosmonaut provides a wonderful account of the bits you wouldn't even think were there. I remember it being the first book that I got completely lost in and couldn't stop thinking about for a long while afterwards. The setting is Tyneside during World War II, but the theme is timeless - a child alone in the adult world, living off his wits and learning how to survive on his own.During his travels by train, he mourns the closings and threatened closings of all the small branch lines that reached so deep into the countryside and coast.

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