If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book next year, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com

Our March author interviews: Karen Pullen (3/1), Lowcountry Crime authors: Tina Whittle, Polly Iyer, Jonathan M. Bryant, and James M. Jackson (3/8), Annette Dashofy (3/15), Edith Maxwell (3/22) and Barb Ross (3/29).

Saturday Guest Bloggers in March: Maris Soule (3/4), and Virginia Mackey (3/11). WWK Saturday bloggers write on 3/18--Margaret S. Hamilton and on 3/25--Kait Carson.

Julie Tollefson won the Mystery Writers of America Midwest Chapter's Holton Award for best unpublished manuscript (member category) for her work in progress, In The Shadows. Big news for a new year. Congratulations, Julie.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Warren Bull's new Lincoln mystery, Abraham Lincoln In Court & Campaign has been released. Look for the Kindle version on February 3.

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published.

Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Once a Kappa" was published as a finalist in the Southern Writer's Magazine annual short story contest issue. Mysterical-E published her "Double Crust Corpse" in the Fall 2016 issue. "Baby Killer" will appear in the 2017 solar eclipse anthology Day of the Dark to be published this summer prior to the eclipse in August.

Linda Rodriquez has two pending book publications. Plotting the Character-Driven Novel will be released by Scapegoat Press on November 29th. Every Family Doubt, the fourth Skeet Bannion mystery, is scheduled for release on June, 13, 2017. Look for E. B. Davis's interview with Linda here in June!

Cross Genre Publications anthology, Hidden Youth, will contain Warren Bull's "The Girl, The Devil, and The Coal Mine." The anthology will be released in late November 2016. The We've Been Trumped anthology released by Dark House Press on September 28th contains Warren Bull's "The Wall" short story and KM Rockwood's "A Phone Call to the White House." KM writes under the name Pat Anne Sirs for this volume.

James M. Jackson's 4th book in the Seamus McCree series, Doubtful Relations, is now available. His novella "Low Tide at Tybee" appears February 7 as part of Lowcountry Crimes: Four Novellas, which is available for pre-order.

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Friday, August 19, 2016

The Oaken Heart by Margery Allingham: A Review by Warren Bull

The Oaken Heart by Margery Allingham: A Review by Warren Bull





This is not a novel. Although Margery Allingham is one of the great writers of Mystery Fiction’s Golden Age, she also wrote non-fiction about her life and experiences. The Oaken Heart tells about a small village named Auburn during World War II. I found it rather difficult to identify people usually called by their nicknames. And I’m not sure her experience was typical of what people went through.
Still, it is a record of the effect of war skillfully written by an intelligent, observant woman. It gives a sense of the trials, fears and tragedy that accompanied even people far from the front lines.  It is not without humor, even during the darkest days.
She conveys what a shock it was to find out a war was underway when no sane person wanted war and when the losses of WWI were still keenly felt. She talked about how planning for housing for children evacuated from London were accomplished without fuss of bother in one day.  The author also talked about the false hope generated when little happened in the earliest day after war was declared.
She mentioned so many aspects of her life that I cannot do justice to everything she described. Among them she wrote about trying to continue her work as a writer during the upheavals caused by the war; how military setbacks, such as the capitulation of France, were experienced as very personal blows; and what it was like to be bombed.

All in all this is a remarkable book by a first rate writer about England during World War II. If you want to get a sense of what that time was like, I cannot think of a better book to read.

3 comments:

Margaret Turkevich said...

Allingham's book sounds very interesting, a good source of small town life during WW2. Earlier this year, I researched the same period in small coastal American town, distilling facts of daily life, political realities, hopes and fears, into a short story.

Gloria Alden said...

Warren, somewhere in my thousands of books, I probably have a copy of this book. I'll have to try to find it. Of course, my early years I lived through World War 11 in a rural area, but went to movies in the closest town that always had news clips of the war overseas.

KM Rockwood said...

Thanks, Warren. I've been reading quite a bit of WWII fiction lately, and this sounds like it might be a good addition to my list.