The Old Time

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-03-20
  • Publisher: Trafford on Demand Pub

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My generation was the last to grow up without television. Life was different then, and that eventually led me to the title, The Old Time. I was lucky enough to grow up in a beautiful part of the Chiltern Hills in Buckinghamshire, and went to the primary school in West Wycombe, situated at the bottom of West Wycombe Hill, with the Hell Fire caves at the back and the Dashwood mausoleum on top next to the church with the famous golden ball. At the end of my road were the meadows and woods where I spent all my time playing out. I have vivid memories of those days and my adolescence (there were no teenagers then, remember), and also of the schools I went to, and the teachers who made such impressions on us. But this is not a book of memories. It is a loving recreation of countless funny and vexatious experiences that I had with friends and playmates. We had real childhoods then, and I have tried to recreate that world, to make it come alive, like shoes to walk around in. It is often said of first novels that they are thinly-disguised autobiographies. The Old Time is a thinly-disguised autobiography which has a lot of the characteristics of a first novel. Some unfunny people I know have said that the book made them laugh. It is hilarious in places, but it is also deadly serious. I am creating the 1950s from a very personal perspective. It's an emotional world I want the reader to enter and get absorbed by. This is not Sociology. This is how it felt.

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