Monday, June 29, 2009

Book Sharing Monday (x)

This week we have gone for a beautifully illustrated autobiography - War Boy, by Michael Foreman. I bought this book 20 years ago for my eldest daughter when she was studying WWII
at primary school. Now she is a primary teacher herself! It is the author and illustrator's childhood memoirs of growing up in a Suffolk coastal village (Lowestoft) during the war.
It is such an evocative and moving book, and perfectly captures the strange and unique atmosphere of wartime rural Britain.

The images are full of immense detail - the kind of things that a child would notice, but an adult might not remember. That is what makes this book, I think. Michael's mother - widowed a month before his birth - ran the village shop, which was always full of soldiers, sailors and villagers.

It was so difficult to pick one image to share - there is so much on every page.

Like this picture of Children's Corner at the beach. Of course the beaches were all out of bounds for the duration - this was the Front Line.

Tales of childhood games, home life, the coming of the Yanks, the naval base, air raids, bombings, sailors and soldiers billeted in the local houses. I could go on and on, but for me, this image and these words encapsulate this strange interlude in our history.

Christmas night, 1942, I remember looking back into the room as Mother carried me to the stairs. A sea of faces in the smoke. They were dressed as soldiers and sailors, but wearing paper hats. other boys' fathers, sitting round our table wishing it was their little boy they had just kissed goodnight.

Join in and share more books at Serendipity.


Wyld Jane.. said...

wow, what a great book i will have to remember this one for Thomas x

Unknown said...

it does look like a beautiful and moving book, thanks for sharing it.