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DAVID MITCHELL
author of
'A Boy From Nowhere'!

A Boy From Nowhere

A BOY FROM NOWHERE

David Mitchell's book 'A Boy From Nowhere' is an account of his boyhood memories. Join David in journeying back to his birth place in London’s East End Docklands. David describes the conditions of poverty which existed in pre WW2 times in the East End, what life was like then; read too how the lives of everyone was completely changed when war was declared on 3rd September 1939.

Just two days before, on Friday 1st September, the vast majority of children, including David Mitchell, from the danger areas of London because of the fear of bombing, almost one and a half millions! Everyone knew the docklands would be a prime target of the Luftwaffe and would be heavily bombed. The worst problem of that chaotic day was that neither child nor parent had any idea where they were going – this was discovered only when the children were able to write their first letter home. They were dispatched to destinations all over England; to more peaceful countryside counties which Hitler would not be interested in bombing. But for all the children who took part in this massive evacuation, and their parents, this was an extremely traumatic occasion! To those who organized this mass evacuation, they deserved the highest of honours.

Returning to London in 1941, the David was astonished to find his beloved home intact but the East End area had been all but smashed to pieces. A great deal of damage, as well as loss of life, took place during The Blitz but it was great to see how the old Cockney spirit faced it all with a smile and a joke. Many are the tales of small shows and great sing songs in the air raid shelters, keeping the peoples morale up. They showed Hitler the kind of people he was dealing with.

In 1941 many people thought bombing had come to an end. But that was pure wishful thinking. The people of London, and other cities too, had to endure further attacks which continued mainly with incendiary bombs causing widespread fires. In 1944 the traditional form of bombing stopped and was replaced by Hitler’s V weapons. First of all came the V1 which was a flying bomb, and secondly the much more terrifying V2 which was a rocket bomb, and which arrived without warning. In time, the Allied forces invading France advanced and were able to over-run the sites from which these, and other terrible V weapons, were launched against the UK. It was only then that the bombing and terror attacks against London and other cities ended. This brings him into contact with Czechoslovakia, a communist totalitarian state”

Meanwhile, David's education having been ruined by the WW2, he went in search of employment but without proper education and possessing no qualifications his prospects were very grim to say the least. Apart from that, in those days it was not easy to leave the East End and become a success without money and a proper education, and in 'A BOY FROM NOWHERE' the author describes how, against all odds, and by pure determination along with his refusal to accept second best, he was able to climb the ladder of success and go from poverty to relative affluence. In the process he becomes the UK Director responsible for all Czechoslovak exports of chocolate and sugar confectionery products. This brings him into close contact with Praguie, the capital city of communist Czechoslovakia. For the first time in his life, he is visibly shocked when setting foot in Prague for the first time in January 1953 and seeing that system in operation.

Having to visit Czechoslovakia many times, David learned to speak the language to a reasonable level for an Englishman, got to know the country well, made friends there, and describes to us what it was like to live under communism. He mixes with spies via the Czech Embassy, describes the ill fated PRAGUE SPRING, the invasion by the Warsaw Pact nations, and the revenge of the communists upon the people afterwards. Considered at that time as being something of an expert on Czechoslovakia and knowing many people there David describes how he is contacted by MI5 later who ask for his help. But there is a mystery attached to this matter which David remarks upon in his book.

Eventually, David reluctantly resigns his position with the Czechs but triumphantly builds his own business from nothing! This is really a rags to riches story which reader will find absorbing, because of it’s variety of interesting subjects.




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