At 7PM on 14 April at Waterstones in Hampstead there will be a book launch I’d strongly encourage you to attend. One of my students, Robin Bayley, will be talking about, and reading from, his new book, The Mango Orchard.
As a child, Robin had been bewitched by his grandmother's stories of her father's Mexican adventures: of jungles and banditos, of hidden silver and a narrow escape at the time of the Mexican Revolution.
Almost a hundred years later, Robin retraced his ancestor's steps via New York and Columbia. His book is as much about this journey as it is about Arthur's odyssey. It is a story that travels through time and place, culminating in the discovery that Arturo had left behind him, not just a country, but a Mexicana who had given birth to his child. The story ends with an extraordinary coming together of Arturo’s two families who had not known of each other’s existence until Robin’s arrival.
Trevor Dolby said of Robin’s book, “This is an extraordinary travel book from an extraordinary new talent. The Mango Orchard ranks up there with Sandra Cisneros's Caramelo, and even the books of the great Bruce Chatwin himself.” Click here to check out Robin’s website. There is also a video clip of the the launch party and my interview with Robin here. Stay tuned . . .