I’m delighted to welcome you today to my stop on the blog tour for beautiful and poignant memoir The Princess of Felling by Elaine Cusack. Thank you to Anne Cater and Limelight Classic Productions Ltd for giving me the opportunity to read and review this special and thought provoking book.
About the book:
The Princess of Felling describes Elaine’s childhood and adolescence growing up on Tyneside in the 1970s and 1980s. The book pays homage to her home town of Felling on Tyne and is an extended, loving letter to her late parents.
This illustrated poetic memoir features a Foreword by Michael Chaplin, photographs of Felling taken in summer 2018 by Rossena Petcova and unique maps by poet and artist Steve Lancaster.
The book contains reminiscences by Felling folk plus guest appearances by Nick Heyward, David Almond, Tracey Thorn, Sir Kingsley Amis, The Reverend Richard Coles, Lady Elsie Robson, U.A. Fanthorpe, Gyles Brandreth and more.
The Princess of Felling by Elaine Cusack resonates with readers of all ages. As actress and Felling lass Jill Halfpenny says in the book, “Reading Elaine’s stories and poetry takes me back to my childhood in Felling and all of the smells, sounds and tastes of that time. Her words allow me to remember things that I didn’t know I’d forgotten.”
About the author:
Find out more about Elaine’s writing and forthcoming gigs by visiting http://www.dipdoomagazoo.wordpress.com, http://www.ticketsource.co.uk/cusackmansions and by liking her Elaine Cusack writer page on Facebook.
There is something really rather wonderful about The Princess of Felling by Elaine Cusack. It may only be small in stature, but it is filled to capacity with heartfelt emotion and love, not only for the people who have helped Elaine become the person she is, but also of Felling itself.
I’m not particularly familiar with Felling, but that doesn’t matter as this book instantly transports you there, taking you on a poetical journey of what it was like to grow up in the seventies and to become a teen in the eighties, bringing a time I remember so well vividly to life through the sheer power of the author’s writing. I found myself reminiscing along with Elaine as the music scene of the eighties was described, feeling green with envy as she talked about being at the live shows of The Tube as a teenager, something fifteen year old me would have sold my soul for at the time!
But the part of the story that resonated with me the most was the love Elaine so obviously has for her family and the home town she grew up in. The stories of visiting her Nan as a child and of her relationship with her Mam and Dad over the years had an emotional impact on me that I never expected. It was like a tsunami of memories and emotion suddenly washed over me, drowning me in nostalgia as the young girl I used to be came back into focus for the first time in a long time. Words can be powerful and there is something about Elaine Cusack’s writing that spoke to me on a personal level.
The Princess of Felling is a special book that has stolen my heart. The poignant and thought provoking words and poetry, alongside pictures of both the past and the present, tell a story of love, loss, hope and resilience. Of how where we’re from and the people we’ve known have helped shape who we are, but have also given us the tools to continue forward in the world long after they’re gone.
Elaine Cusack has brought not only Felling vividly to life, but also those people who have meant the most to her. A beautiful and moving memoir that I know I will read again and again! The Princess of Felling may be short, but what it lacks in size is more than made up for with the quiet and powerful strength of the words held within its pages. A stunning book that will stay with me.
The Princess of Felling by Elaine Cusack is available to purchase now:
Buy your copy in person from selected outlets including Hexham’s Cogito Books, Felling Volunteer Library, Newcastle Central Library, Happy Planet Studio and Gallery in Whitley Bay and online from Elaine’s publisher http://www.limelightclassics.com.
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