NEW WORK IN PROGRESS

YESTERMORROW A futuristic novel about climate change. Thesis:  Our extravagant life-styles and economic systems built on growth are totally unsustainable in a finite world. Since the industrial revolution our global behaviour has increasingly hastened the warming of the planet and corresponding cataclysmic changes in the earth’s future climate. Setting: The story of an extended family, the Whiteoaks who are members of a transition movement. They move between Devon and middle-Britain. Timescale:  2066 towards 2100 Message: When planning for our futures, we can learn from our past.                                   and DAYBREAK AT ORCOMBE Collected Poems by Noel Harrower, including Devon Poems, Heartland Poems and the long poem A WALK THROUGH TIME, together with some Poems of Pain and light verse and performance poetry.
© Noel Harrower 2018
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Nottingham Post review of “Uncivil War” 

Fictional tale puts children at heart of              monumental period NOEL   Harrower   will   be   a   name   familiar   to   many   Bygones   readers.   He   spent   most   of   his   working   life   as   a   Career’s Officer   in   Nottinghamshire   and   won   several   awards   for   his   one-act   plays.   Now,   he’s   written   a   fascinating   novel about   five   fictitious   Nottinghamshire   children,   whose   lives   are   torn   apart   by   the   English   Civil   War.   Tom   is   a   stable boy    for    John    Hutchinson,    owner    of    Owthorpe    Manor,    who    later    became    the    Parliamentary    Governor    of Nottingham   Castle.   He   was   one   of   the   commissioners   who   signed   of   King   Charles   I’s   death   warrant.   Tom’s   sister Meg   is   a   maidservant   at   Pierrepont   Hall.   Her   friend   Nick   is   a   trainee   footman   who   never   wanted   to   be   a   soldier, while   Jed   takes   the   King’s   shilling   and   serves   in   both   armies   but   later   regrets   it.   The   fifth   child   in   the   saga   is   Alice, who   is   left   to   help   run   a   refuge   for   victims.   The   novel’s   twin   tales   cover   the   period   from   the   outset   of   the   war, following   the   raising   of   the   King’s   Standard   at   Nottingham   Castle   in   1642   through   to   1646,   when   King   Charles surrendered   to   the   Scottish   army   outside   Newark.   Seen   through   the   eyes   of   innocent   children,   Uncivil   War   depicts the   characters’   initial   excitement   at   the   thought   of   conflict.   Later,   they   come   to   hate   the   war   through   life-changing experiences   and   question   whether   it   ever   needed   to   have   happened.   The   author,   pictured,   dedicates   the   book   to   the countless   thousands   of   child   soldiers   across   the   world   and   through   all   the   ages.   He   says:   “Yesterday’s   happenings provide   insights   into   human   nature,   which   we   can   learn   from.   Sadly,   lessons   are   seldom   learnt.   “Civil   wars   are usually   the   most   cruel   of   all,   splitting   families   and   neighbours.   “In   my   book,   this   is   seen   in   the   Pierrepont   family and   also   in   the   tensions   between   Tom   and   Meg.   Members   of   these   families   are   seen   to   come   together   at   the   end. “Compassion   and   resistance   to   the   war   is   shown   by   Elizabeth   Drury   and   her   young   daughter,   Alice,   who   learns from   her   example.   “Meg   and   Nick   show   great   courage   when   the   plague   hits   Newark   at   the   height   of   the   third   siege.     “Although   these   characters   are   fictitious,   there   were   real   people   in   Nottinghamshire   who   behaved   in   this   way.   In our   own   time,   we   hear   about   such   happenings   .   .   .   “Hopefully,   my   book   is   relevant   for   our   time.   “My   aim   was   to replace   the   concept   of   picturesque   Cavaliers   and   godly   Roundheads   with   recognisable   individuals,   whom   we might   meet   in   the   high   street   today.”   Noel,   who   now   lives   in   Devon,   recalls:   “When   I   arrived   in   Nottingham,   my office   was   within   a   stone’s   throw   of   a   plaque   on   a   wall   announcing   that   this   was   the   spot   where   King   Charles   1st raised   his   standard   in   1642.   “I   went   to   the   library   and   read   Wood’s   History   Of   The   Civil   War   In   Nottinghamshire. This   led   me   to   join   an   adult   education   course   on   the   subject,   run   by   Nottingham   University.   “My   attention   was caught   by   the   fact   that   Lucy   Hutchinson   had   written   her   own   account   of   the   war   in   which   her   husband   had   held the   post   of   governor   of   Nottingham   Castle.   “I   bought   a   copy   of   her   book   from   a   second-hand   dealer   and   discovered that   she   was   a   strong-minded   woman,   judgemental   but   brave.   I   was   hooked   on   the   subject.”   He   resolved   to   put   the children   centre   stage,   and   as   it   unfolded,   it   became   two   separate   tales   of   a   brother   and   sister   who   leave   the   family farmstead   to   work   in   grand   houses   in   Nottinghamshire.   As   a   boy   growing   up   in   the   Second   World   War,   Noel   loved historical   adventures   stories,   especially   The   Children   Of   The   Forest,   by   Captain   Marriott.   Now   he’s   written   an engaging,   action-packed   story   that   brings   history   to   life,   in   Uncivil   War,   Twin   Tales   From   Nottinghamshire,    by Noel Harrower, is published by Troubador at £8.99 From The Nottingham Post of February 29th 2016
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