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I live near Mouse Valley in southern Scotland with two rescued dogs and a bag of golf clubs. I have written all my life – and I freely admit that essay-writing was only subject that earned good marks at school.
Before turning to fiction, I was a technical author – and produced many volumes of user material for some of Britain’s larger and more influential companies.
I have two daughters and enjoy the company of my five grandchildren, aged ten to twenty. I am a sports fanatic; follow cricket and football – and play mid-handicap golf as often as the weather will allow.
On wet days (and there are plenty!, I write to earn the fare for our next foreign adventure. Last year, I married my long-term Thai girl-friend and she has promised to take me to the islands and highlands of her beautiful country.
'Daughter of the Snake' and 'Thailand Honey' are based some of my experiences in Bangkok. 'A Click Away from Chaos' comes from an earlier life. I keep in touch with my many friends around the world by e-mail. 'Midnight Picasso' is set on Gran Canaria and explores the delights of that amazing island.
Francis W. Porretto
on Aug. 20, 2010 :
Praise God for this book. It's not a proper fit for any genre but its own. In the strictest sense, it's both plotless and themeless. I can't imagine a conventional print-publishing house taking a chance on it. But in its episodic, gently madcap way, it overflows with life, love, and laughter.
Tim and Carrie Melrose are your average middle-aged British married couple, near enough. Ashiestiel Green is your average Scottish village. The people who live there are probably as typical as typical gets for their setting and their interactions. But I defy anyone to read "A Click Away From Chaos" without wearing a huge grin throughout and bursting into full-throated, affectionate laughter at the least predictable moments.
England in our time would seem a place of no promise and a bleak future. We hear innumerable stories of its travails, and few of its triumphs. The Sceptered Isle has definitely seen better days. But to read of the trials and pleasures of Tim's freelance-trainer working life, of the wife and dogs he loves and the village he alternately enjoys and endures -- the dreaded you've-been-volunteered episodes of "community involvement," including the "climactic" Easter Fete, are worth the price of admission all by themselves -- is a refreshment for heart and soul. It provides the sort of experience that causes one to recommend the book to all one's friends, saying, "No, I can't describe it -- I can't tell you what it's about -- it isn't really about anything -- but I promise you'll love it."
(reviewed within a month of purchase)