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Back in the Day: Melvyn Bragg's deeply affecting, first ever memoir

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I was walking down Walton Street and saw this big poster that had the spitting image of my girlfriend on it. If any of our current political leaders wants to create a vision that actually makes people want to vote, they could do worse than prescribe this to their MPs as required summer reading.

Most purchases from business sellers are protected by the Consumer Contract Regulations 2013 which give you the right to cancel the purchase within 14 days after the day you receive the item. This book engaged me right from the start and I guess Melvyn’s childhood was not very much different to a lot of kids growing up during those years. There’s little I could express except the same choked up feeling that roughens his voice as he tries to make it through the last word of the chapter before the wave of memory drowns him. I did shed a tear when he received his A level and Scholarship results and the quiet but proud way his parents took the news.It was, and is, his place, and I wonder if this doesn’t seem to him now like the greatest luck of his life: a better thing by far than all the TV shows, the fame and the money and the peerage. This is the tale of a boy who lived in a pub and expected to leave school at 15 yet won a scholarship to Oxford. I didn’t appreciate this given the few hours of sunlight and the cold dreary weather I have had to deal with currently. I can’t hope to capture, in the space I have here, this book’s extraordinary emotional geography, let alone its strange, inchoate beauty; the way that Bragg, in his struggle fully to explain his meaning, so often hits on something wise and even numinous (when he does, it’s as if a bell sounds). At Books2Door, we believe that reading is a fundamental skill that every child should have to help improve their vocabulary, grammar, and critical thinking skills.

uk will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Derailed by a severe breakdown when he was thirteen, he developed a passion for reading and study -- though that didn't stop him playing in a skiffle band or falling in love. It covers Melvyn Bragg’s early years alone with his mother while his father fought in the war, the chronic breakdown he experienced when he was 13 and the love of books that saved him, the joys of first romance, and his journey to winning a scholarship at Oxford to study Modern History.And then there is the beloved town itself: Melvyn’s safe and dangerous cradle, a whole world in itself for those that looked for it. Safe because it was his playground, and dangerous because its streets and pubs contained a threat of direct violence; the pressure created on the growing child by constant fear of brawls downstairs in the pub where his parents were landlords played a role in the mental disturbances in his teenage years that Melvyn revealingly documents here. Wigton's streets become soot-streaked theatre for a huge cast of town characters for whom the author shows a convincing, rather than patronising, affection . He has also written several works of non-fiction, including The Adventure of English and The Book of Books about the King James Bible.

He is also a Vice President of the Friends of the British Library, a charity set up to provide funding support to the British Library. Melvyns reflections are vivid and he portrays with eloquence his feelings and emotions of what was often a challenging and difficult time. it brought things back to me, and by doing so, it made me remember what’s really important in life; how glad I am myself to be tethered to certain people, certain places. The story of Bragg himself is a very impressive one but the autobiography isn’t as good as the social history. In my mind’s eye, I could see the street, where the curtains in every house would have been drawn as a mark of respect (I can remember my grandmother doing this when I was a little girl), and on it these men, their faces heavy with age, their hats in their big hands.

a charming account of a lost era, full of details and often lyrical descriptions of people and places . What a memory Bragg has for names and faces; he can describe the new furniture in his parents’ living room as if it were all still there, waiting to be dusted by his indefatigable mum.

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