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Tea, Love and War - Searching for English roots in Assam [Kindle Edition]

David Mitchell
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £6.99
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Product Description

Product Description

The range of the book: from wartime England to colonial Assam; from sapper training in India to jungle warfare in Malaya – Tea, Love and War tells the unique true story of the child of an exploited village woman gaining recognition and acceptance in suburban England. It is split into three parts:?Stuart and?Mary’s story, David’s story, and Ann’s story. Stuart, working on a tea estate in the jungles of Assam, fathers a child by a teenage native woman. Stuart’s letters to his family in pre-war England vividly describe his life as a planter in colonial India but conceal his secret love life. When war breaks out, Stuart joins the Indian army, trains as a sapper and is posted to Malaya, blowing bridges in the desperate rearguard action against the Japanese invasion. Back in wartime England, his sister Mary marries Stuart’s best friend, Arthur, who decides to train as an army officer. Mary, now a young mother pregnant with her second child, tells of the year’s delay in hearing news of her brother’s death at the fall of Singapore. Before the child is born, she learns that Arthur has been killed in action in Italy. The story switches to a jungle village in Assam where a small Anglo-Indian child named Ann fights her way through poverty and discrimination, always seeking the identity of her father and his family. Tea, Love and War is a gripping true story, narrated by Mary through her son David. “Much of the text is taken from the many exercise books that she filled with her memories, and whilst my investigations have expanded and updated her story, the history of the relevant elements of the Second World War, the Blitz and public perception of the Malayan campaign leading to the fall of Singapore are more eloquently seen from her individual viewpoint.” The book will appeal to fans of autobiographies, history and social history – Anglo-Indian culture and exploitation of women in India are key themes in the text – and has been inspired by Wild Swans.

About the Author

A solicitor and former judge, David is a trustee of a leading independent school and sits on various other committees. The author of the Bluffer's Guide to both Law and Divorce, he was inspired to write this book by the extraordinary history of his newly discovered Indian family. David enjoys a variety of sport and hobbies, including golf, tennis, squash and chess.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1342 KB
  • Print Length: 369 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1780880898
  • Publisher: Matador (20 Dec 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006ONIZ36
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #134,178 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing true story 25 July 2012
By Stuart
Format:Paperback
This is a must read book. It tells the story of a man involved in the tea business who secretly fathers two children with a local Indian girl and then dies in the last world war. His English family remained unaware that they had relatives in India until some 40 years later when the younger child traces her English family. This book is very well researched and beautifully written by the nephew of the deceased man. The book is hard to put down and I strongly recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This true and moving story is rooted in Leicester, just before the start of WWII, where an ordinary middleclass family finds itself flung across the world. A brother goes out to India to the tea plantations, and then on to fight in Malaya. A husband joins up to fight and die in Europe. A wife and mother waits at home amidst the Blitz. A fascinating series of snaphots of life in Assam, in the Special Forces, in the British Army, and in England. A moving evocation of the courage of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Touching and Emotive Biography 3 Jan 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Tea Love and War is a highly evocative, and an utterly absorbing page-turner, taking you on a rich cultural journey through the tapestry of a changing inter-war Britain and the colonial tea plantations of India, and the shattering impact of the Second World War. David Mitchell skilfully details the lives of a British plantation manager in Assam, his sister growing up in inter-war Leicester, and Ann, his daughter from his relationship with a plantation worker, struggling to survive and look after her family in post-war India.

Touching and heartfelt, yet matter of fact and never sentimental, this biography would also appeal to anyone who has a historical interest in the final years of the Raj and post-colonial India. This book is remarkably easy to read, a genuine tear-jerker, and very hard to put down. A must for all visitors to the Tea Estates.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a different David Mitchell... 9 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback
Just thought I'd let people know that this isn't the same David Mitchell who wrote Cloud Atlas etc - different publisher, different author. It's a fairly common name, isn't it?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good read 19 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed reading this book, particularly the beginning about Mary and Stuart and their correspondence and then the end about Ann's life. I found the section in the middle a bit boring though.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Real page turner 26 Mar 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An emotionally charged real life story about people of different cultures, thrown together in false but difficult circumstances. Showing human nature as it really is. Would make a good bollywood film?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tea, Love & War 23 Mar 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
An engrossing series of stories based on the lives of real people who lived and worked in India before, during, and after the second world war. I was fully engrossed with the stories throughout the book. Highly recommended.
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