** Saga Magazine 'Life Story' competition winner**
From the streets of London to the Welsh countryside, evacuee Iris Simantel tells of her desperate search for somewhere to belong in Far From the East End.
Born in 1938 under threat of looming war, Iris spent her early years playing in the rubble of bombed buildings in Dagenham by day and cowering in a dusty shelter at night. But the hardships of poverty and the dreaded Blitz could not match the pain she felt at her parents' indifference. She prayed that just once her mother would hold her when the bombs rained down. But loneliness only intensified when she was evacuated.
Finding the nurturing home she had always dreamt of in her adopted Welsh parents, she wonders what, when she returns to London after the war, will be waiting for her. Will she ever be able to love her philandering father, depressive mother and an angry, bullying brother? Will her family even survive? Or will she have to look farther afield for the affection she so longs for? Prepare to be taken on a beautiful and emotional journey with Iris Simantel's nostalgic memoir, Far from the East End.
Iris Simantel is the acclaimed winner of the Saga Magazine 'Life Story' competition, telling of her evacuation from Dagenham to Wales, and her family's post-War move to South Oxney. She now lives in Devon.