Local Author Tells Tales at Shrewsbury Library

Shropshire based author Neil Rathmell is a Cambridge graduate whose work has been published by publishing giant Faber & Faber. He enjoyed a long and successful career in the arts and education before deciding to make writing his full time occupation. He will deliver an interesting talk about his career as well as readings from his most recently published works at Shrewsbury Library next Wednesday 3 September at 7.30pm.

An Englishman (and his mother) Abroad, Neil’s most recently published novel, has just gone on sale nationwide. Published by Southernwood Press, the book tells the remarkable tale of the author’s previously untravelled mother’s visit to India to celebrate her ninetieth birthday. The tale begins in Shrewsbury at the author’s home in the town centre.

“Integrity and exactness shine forth from every page,” was what the Sunday Times reviewer wrote about his first novel, a view that seems to be shared by readers of his new memoir. “Highly evocative” and “exquisitely told” are typical of the reactions so far.

“Taking my mother to stay with friends in India was quite an adventure,” Neil says. “I decided soon after we came back that I wanted to write about it. But with other writing projects to get on with too, it has taken a long time. My mother is ninety-seven now and still living with me in the house we share in the middle of Shrewsbury. Above all, the book is a tribute to her. She’s had a long and sometimes difficult life, but she’s a survivor and, in an unexpected way, the visit to India helped her to come to terms with a lot of things. I hope I've succeeded in capturing some of that in my book.”

Hear Neil read extracts from the book at Shrewsbury Library, Castle Foregate, Shrewsbury on Wednesday 3 September at 7.30pm. £3 entrance, tickets can be purchased in advance from the library.

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Pete White Pete White

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