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

July Interviews

7/1 Lena Gregory, Scone Cold Killer
7/8 Jessica Baker, Murder on the Flying Scotsman
7/15 TG Wolff, Driving Reign
7/22 Leslie Budewitz, The Solace of Bay Leaves
7/29 Cynthia Kuhn, The Study of Secrets

Saturday Guest Bloggers

7/11 Mark Dressler
7/18 James McCrone

WWK Bloggers:

7/4 Valerie Burns
7/25 Kait Carson


Congratulations to our two Silver Falchion Finalists Connie Berry and Debra Goldstein!

Paula Gail Benson's "Cosway's Confidence" placed second and Debra Goldstein's "Wabbit's Carat" received Honorable Mention in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable 2020 short story contest. Congratulations, Paula and Debra!

Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequinn's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.

KM Rockwood's "Burning Desire," and Paula Gail Benson's "Living One's Own Truth," have been published in the anthology Heartbreaks & Half-truths. Congratulations to all of the WWK writers.

Please join Margaret S. Hamilton's Kings River Life podcast of her short story "Busted at the Book Sale" here. Congratulations, Margaret!

Look Margaret S. Hamilton's short stories in the new Mid-Century Murder by Darkhouse Books. Margaret's story is titled "4BR/3.5BA Contemporary."

Grace Topping's second novel in Laura Bishop staging series, Staging Wars, was released by Henery Press on April 28th. Look for the interview here from April 29th.

Annette Dashofy's 10th Zoe Chambers mystery, Til Death, will be released on June 16th. Look for the interview here on June 17.


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.


Margaret S. Hamilton 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.