The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale

The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale

Rebecca Stonehill / Aug 22, 2019

The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale A compelling page turner of a buried past resurfacing set against a backdrop of the s youth culture and war torn Crete Handsome but troubled Jim is almost and he lives and breathes girl

  • Title: The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale
  • Author: Rebecca Stonehill
  • ISBN: 9781999860110
  • Page: 361
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • A compelling page turner of a buried past resurfacing, set against a backdrop of the 1960 s youth culture and war torn Crete.1967 Handsome but troubled, Jim is almost 18 and he lives and breathes girls, trad jazz, Eel Pie Island and his best friend, Charles One night, he hears rumours of a community of young people living in caves in Matala, Crete Determined to escape hA compelling page turner of a buried past resurfacing, set against a backdrop of the 1960 s youth culture and war torn Crete.1967 Handsome but troubled, Jim is almost 18 and he lives and breathes girls, trad jazz, Eel Pie Island and his best friend, Charles One night, he hears rumours of a community of young people living in caves in Matala, Crete Determined to escape his odious, bully of a father and repressed mother, Jim hitchhikes through Europe down to Matala At first, it s the paradise he dreamt it would be But as things start to go wrong and his very notion of self unravels, the last thing Jim expects is for this journey of hundreds of miles to set in motion a passage of healing which will lead him back to the person he hates most in the world his father.Taking in the counter culture of the 1960 s, the clash of relationships between the WW2 generation and their children, the baby boomers, this is a novel about secrets from the past finally surfacing, the healing of trauma and the power of forgiveness.A captivating story that will mesmerise fans of Lucinda Riley, Dinah Jefferies and Tracy Rees.

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      Posted by:Rebecca Stonehill
      Published :2019-05-25T07:47:52+00:00

    About "Rebecca Stonehill"

      • Rebecca Stonehill

        Rebecca Stonehill is from London but currently lives in Nairobi with her husband and three young children where she set up Magic Pencil, an initiative to give children greater access to creative writing and poetry She has had numerous short stories published over the years, for example in Vintage Script, What the Dickens magazine, Ariadne s Thread and Prole Books but The Poet s Wife Bookouture is her first full length novel, set in Granada during the Spanish Civil war and Franco s dictatorship Her second novel, The Girl and the Sunbird, was published by Bookouture in June 2016 Her third novel, set in Crete in WW2 and the 1960 s will be published in late 2017.


    542 Comments

    1. Atmospheric, insightful, and profoundly moving!The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale is predominantly set on the island of Crete during both the 1960s and WWII and is told from two perspectives; Jim, a young man who travels to Matala to live for the moment and be free from his stifling home life and strained relationship with his father; and Alfred, a young man embarking on a journey of survival in a time of utter devastation and destruction.The prose is expressive, vivid, and eloquent. The ch [...]


    2. I am a HUGE fan of Rebecca Stonehill's writing, having loved her previous two beautiful novels. I thought those novels were perfection, but with this amazing book, the author raises the bar even higher. This is a masterpiece, with vividly drawn, engaging characters who tug at your heart strings and will remain with you long after the book is finished. This book covers so much, the war and its aftermath, its devastating effect on subsequent generations and yet it is masterfully done, the story en [...]


    3. I had the privilege of reading an advance copy of this book, and I’m happy to say I loved it! I’ve read all of Rebecca Stonehill’s novels, as they take me into worlds I never knew before, into the hearts and minds of her characters so that I root for them, feel with them, want the best for them, cry for them, laugh with them. This book especially reminds the reader not judge people by their surface personalities; that even the most unpleasant of characters sometimes is worthy of understand [...]


    4. Overall the story is very enjoyable and the style of writing is what I call 'easy reading'. After a busy day I found it a nice easy book to read, simply written with sufficient descriptions to conjure up a good picture in my mind of the characters and locations. There is nothing pretentious or over flowery about the writing, which is a positive for me. The second half of the book picked up the pace for me and I found Alfred's story very interesting and moving. I think it's a very good book to re [...]


    5. I read Rebecca Stonehill's gorgeous first book, so was eager to read this - and she has done it again. Again she has created a beautiful, sharply observed, and vivid story of love and forgiveness that spans generations. The secret life in question is a powerful one - but really, all the lives here are 'secret' in that they discover who they are and what they want throughout the book. In Stonehill's novels, place is as important as character. So Crete, and the Caves, pulsate with life. I cannot r [...]


    6. This is the third book I have read from Rebecca Stonehill. I loved this book what a great story.2 great stories with the same setting on Crete one late 60's and one during WWII . I love the way Rebecca deals with the past. We all know the WWII Stories set in France Germany etc but Rebecca deals with the more obscure places that you forget also went through the war.


    7. There is so much to like about Rebecca Stonehill's third novel. The era is drawn with details which take the reader right into the terraced house in suburban London in the 60's. Things like the tinned food meals and the constant radio created a real sense of place and time. The tension between the old war generation and the empowered baby-boomers is explored in the tricky relationship between Jimmy and his parents. We see Jimmy's struggles not only with his parents, but with finding his place in [...]


    8. This is a wonderful lyrical story of a young man's awakening. Set over two time periods - the 1960s and the 2nd World War - it explores first love, friendship and the hidden secrets and traumas that exist in many families. Rebecca paints a sharp, sparkling picture of the island of Crete that brings this island's history, remarkable people and stunning scenery to life. This is a novel that is written with love and tells a tale of loyalty and self-discovery. I loved it.


    9. Beautiful book! So much happens while reading. I started out liking the maincharacter which turned into irritation for his selfishness and finally sympathy for his journey. Wow what a great read! The characters are very real. Not just good guy bad guy, but also everything in between. It made me laugh and cry and think about old friendships. Highly recommended!!!


    10. Rebecca Stonehill has done it again, I have been lucky enough to read The Secret Life of Alfred Nightingale before publication, and it is superb. I have never cried whilst reading a book, the way I did at this. Beautiful, emotional, sad, funny, a wonderful insight into relationships. Spanning generations it tells the story of a man still coping with the effects of the war, and a young mans coming of age, and of renewing of a friendship that never died. All I can say is READ IT. I know this is a [...]


    11. This book has one of the best opening lines ever. It made me laugh out loud which is always a good hook for me. The energy right from the beginning was age appropriately buoyant and developed accordingly as the characters grew older in parts two and three.There are some beautiful truths at the heart of this novel about forgiveness and the inheritance of emotional states as well as physical characteristics. It really made me ponder how, though the world continues to make poor choices, there is so [...]


    12. This was such a profoundly moving novel that evoked many emotions in me. A story cleverly told in two different time frames from two generations of one family going through a pivotal time in their own lives which would leave a lasting impression forever.The author, Rebecca Stonehill, swept me away to a time in 1967, to a place of free spirit, young love and a time of self-discovery. This particular part of the story was quite fascinating. An adventure for the youngsters who quite bravely took th [...]


    13. Novel set at the MATALA CAVES, CRETE in the Summer of LoveIn the 1960s a community of backpacking hippies settled in Matala, a remote corner of Crete in the Mediterranean, where tourists were largely unknown. Tourists even came to goggle at the hippie tourists! They lived in man-made Neolithic caves and slept on Roman tombs. The most famous visitor to Matala was singer Joni Mitchell, who immortalised the ideal hippie scene in her 1971 song “Carey” The author’s mother apparently spent some [...]


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