When: June 16 7pm – 9pm
Where: Hotel La Tour Birmingham, VIP area at Alvar Bar
Who: Robert Ronsson
Why: Local author Robert shares family secrets as he talks about No Mean Affair, the bio-fiction novel based on the journey of his real-life grandmother, from poverty-stricken housewife in the tenements of Glasgow to the centre of British political power in Westminster.
How can I be there? reserve your place
My view: At the time of writing, I have just finish Barbara Kingsolver’s The Poisonwood Bible and am struggling to escape from the oppressiveness of evangelical missionaries and the overwhelming Congo! Launching straight into No Mean Affair promises at least some relief then from the jungle-throttled landscape which has been my literary home for the last week. Opening in turn-of-the-century Glasgow, I am immediately in a very different – albeit still deprived – place. Mary Ireland (grandmother of author Robert) is trapped in poverty and an unhappy marriage. Perhaps no surprise that she is distracted by the dynamic political John Wheatley, leading her into a world of romance, corruption and political intrigue. Like Kingsolver’s book, No Mean Affair weaves fiction alongside real events of the time and I am looking forward to seeing how the story develops as Mary and Wheatley cross paths with Oswald Mosley and Ramsay MacDonald. I am intrigued to try to work out the extent of fact version fiction in the book: perhaps the best way to uncover this will be at #Meettheauthor!