A nostalgic look at the 1960s. “Angels with Dirty Faces” by Kevin James is available to purchase in paperback from Amazon
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“Angels with Dirty Faces” by Kevin James is published
About the Book:
I want to cast your mind back to a rather distant Swinging Sixties to give you a feel for the atmosphere of that era. Usually summers were hot, The Beatles led the way in music, Carnaby Street a world leader in fashion, black and white television, phone booths with penny slots. The environment in this village was pleasant enough for the majority were, as we say, quite well to do, whereas the four young lads were always nearly skint. The main objective was to grab any work such as gardening, cleaning cars, tidying up the church, hay-making, sticking up skittle pins, as long as they could up to Friday, then they would go to a seaside resort and have fun and a meal as a treat for themselves.
It was their form of escapism though the village was picturesque with the old church halfway up the hill and surrounding woods, orchards and fields, they would feel trapped in this mundane life. There were hardly any traffic or street lights. It was boredom (when work was scarce) followed by mischief or pranks. They never stayed home much as their parents told them to get out from under their feet at an early age with soft words of encouragement. They would cancel out frustration by getting together in a hayrick, which was hard to find on a wet day, playing cards, consuming smuggled cider and food an adult had bought at the village stores. I hope this is an insight to those angels with dirty faces.
Excerpt from the Book:
“They searched for some pieces of dried wood and eventually they were all tucked down in the ditch. They had a lighter to get the fire going and with a few rotten sticks and pieces of paper they had brought, they soon had a fire going.
The only trouble was that they were getting a bit bored and irritable with each other. So they then got out the cooking gear and started doing a fry up and dishing out some more cider, which was starting to make them ‘throw caution to the winds’ as they say!!
Wookey took control. The last thing he wanted was the fire engine trying to get them!! The other lads felt that the cider was affecting them but realised they had to be careful. They said they would be back by 11.00 p.m. but as it approached ten they were beginning to miss their home comforts. They were getting very jittery, seeing odd movements in the bushes as the wind was getting up. Their bravery lasted a bit longer due to finishing the cider, but they thought they had best make headway for home. One of the lads, Rookie, wanted to hang on a bit longer as he had secretly put some chestnuts in the fire to roast. Several more minutes later passed when there was an almighty BANG. Lots of ash was sent flying into the air; they wiped their eyes and looked stunned. Rookie noticed a big red circle in the top pockets of Wookey’s coat. He didn’t realise that a burning ember had landed in his top pocket!! It looked like a red sun!! Rookie kept very quiet after this incidence!! They covered over the ashes with earth and stones and were on their way home weary and contented.
As they approached the usual corner of Mr ‘Know-It-All’ he was just back from the Village Pub. When he was Wookey he couldn’t resist saying, “Money always seems to burn a hole in your pocket!! Now you are all back I can rest in peace not expecting the woods to be alight!!
Rookie kept quiet about the chestnuts. He was only trying to give a surprise to his mates and anyway, ‘it could have been worse.’”
“Angels with Dirty Faces” by Kevin James is available to purchase in paperback from Amazon at:
Press/Media Contact Details:
New Generation Publishing
Tel. 01234 712 064