The novel is now available for download at:
Barnes and Nobel
What is the book about?
Harry's little leather case
An old man dies on a cold winter's night sheltering under a viaduct, but his troubled and tormented soul refuses to leave this world until a wicked conspiracy is exposed. A conspiracy detailed in the Journal of Harry Somerville.
It is 1965 and Luke Collingbourne, a sixteen-year-old youth, is destitute and living on the streets. His future is as bleak as his traumatic past; until the day he inherits a little, leather case from an ailing vagrant, who dies next to him, in the night.
The contents of the old man's case expose a twenty-year-old mystery that Luke is determined to solve. What gradually unfolds is a heart-wrenching story with its roots in the deserts of North Africa.
Over the next six years, a determined and resolute Luke continues to unfold the incredible truth; revealing slander, cover-ups, hatred, murder, revenge, retribution and the remarkable reason why Harry Somerville died as a sad, old vagrant.
The denouement brings their life-stories together, with breathtaking consequences!
What was my inspiration for the novel?
I wanted to write a story which encompassed the feel of the late 60's early 70's. There was an innocence and simplicity about the time that I wanted to capture. I was also interested, thanks to my Dad, in the 8th Army and the battle for El Alamein. He told me a little about his time in the fly-infested desert but I was amazed at the real hardship and suffering the 'Desert Rats' endured when I started researching the battle.
My challenge was to seamlessly incorporate both elements into my novel i.e. aspects of the battle of El Alamein and life in the 60's. Harry Somerville was my link-pin.
Every story should take the reader on an emotional journey that ends satisfactorily for the reader. I hope I have achieved this with 'The Journal of Harry Somerville.'
Only time will tell.
Absolutely fantastic! A thoroughly enjoyable read. So good I couldn't put it down until I'd read the whole thing. 3.30am finish!!!
Worth every star I have given it.
squeeky43, June 2015, iBooks.
It was a fantastic book that I couldn't put down when started. It was thoroughly enjoyable and I will recommend it to others.
Angelcakesxoxo, June 2015, iBooks
I adored this book. An emotional roller coaster with characters to fall in love with and hate in equal measures. An inspiring tale of good vs evil that I couldn't put down. I thoroughly enjoyed the journey it took me on.
Emmaevans, June 2015, smashwords.com
This book has you gripped from the start wanting to know more. You can really feel the characters and move back and forth with them. It truly captures the era and you can feel yourself being there with them, a truly gripping and sometimes sad tale that keeps you wanting to just read one more page.
Kris, June 2015, smashwords.com
As Haydn's other books this comes up to his usual standard. Read it in double quick time as I couldn't put it down. Very enjoyable, a real page turner full of twists and turns. Highly recommended.
W. Couldwell, June 2015,
Review by Dipa Suresh
This is a story after my own heart; while my work is all about conversing and empathising with random strangers across my country India, yours is all about a young homeless boy who lives on the streets and befriends a homeless man, who leaves him a legacy.
Your book is fast paced and it held my interest right from the start. I could visualise the scene as the Youth approaches the old man with a piece of food, and as he watches his old weathered face as he drinks his ‘meths’ from a gin bottle. The animosity of the other homeless people around the Youth is palpable, and I could feel the tension rise as they mock him for being able to read while the rest of them cannot.
This is a thoroughly enjoyable story, and as the mystery around the case and the key builds up, I could not help but sigh in disappointment at not being able to read the entire story immediately. Good work there!