The Dead End Kids
When I finish my writing day, I pick up a classic to read. Perhaps Harry Bowling, a true Londoner, or Dickens, the master magician, or Catherine Cookson, queen of sagas. These authors use the vernacular of the street with mesmerising skill. Their gifts of keen observance, compassion, piercing humour and candid honesty bring history alive and provides pure escapism. We all have found refuge in the pages of a book, haven’t we? I first found mine in a small American town called Maycomb in Alabama. As a teenager, I read Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird and was shocked to recognise Scout Finch and her father Atticus immediately. They were as familiar as friends. Thanks to Harper’s skill, I laughed with them, ached with them, hoped and cried with them. Little did I realise that I was developing a social conscience urged into life by this powerful historical drama.
Strangely enough, over my writing years, I have never written a novel through a child’s eyes, but Daisy Purbright was conceived long ago - the minute I made a connection with Scout Finch. However, it took time and experience before Daisy was written into life.
February 23rd sees the publication of Girl with Secrets; lead actor, a 9-year-old precocious tomboy, who like Scout, adores her father and believes the world was made just for her. But life takes over and the perilous nature of world events leaves an indelible mark on Daisy and her family.
Just as it does for all the Scouts of this world, which is why I added an epigraph to this book. 17-year-old Patsie Duggan and his 13-year old sister Maureen, together with a team of other children and teenagers, saved many lives and lost some of their own during 1940/41 as they rescued the trapped and injured of London’s devastated East End. Better known as the “Dead End Kids” they truly were the unsung heroes of the London blitz.
Happy reading everyone.
Love as always, Carol XX