By Euro Weekly News Media • 28 October 2011 • 10:07
IT’S said that truth is stranger than fiction; it is and I can prove it.
When I received an email from a Chris Nand in Fuengirola it was just another ghost-writing enquiry. I didn’t even know if the person wishing me to fictionalise their life story was male of female.
Already working hard I wasn’t enthusiastic but the enquirer persisted and I got stuck in. It told of a youngster’s odyssey from a primitive Fijian village to a hoped for fortune in the West.
On his way to his destiny he was absorbed by Liverpool’s Cavern culture and became acquainted with the Beatles.
Arriving in Spain in the early 80s he opened Fuengirola’s first sports bar, whose clientele included some of the most colourful characters of British criminality. His is one of the most extraordinary stories imaginable.
All I knew about that remote island is my once having a Fijian friend. We shared a job and apartment in England over 40 years ago; he sorted my 21st birthday bash.
As he looked like a suntanned Elvis Presley he was great company when on the pull; boys will be boys.
I was sure his name was Nand but maybe the name is common in the South Sea Islands. I was well into the book when something he wrote identified him as that same Chris Nand.
You’re going to suggest he knew me? Not so, I use a pen name, which he couldn’t possibly have known. Of all the billions of people on earth; we two, from earth opposites, met by chance in Britain and equally by chance we met much later on in life not just in another country but sharing the same town. What are the chances of that happening? Was it coincidence or are there forces at work of which we know little about?
Now you decide which is the strangest; that coincidence or his life story? From his grass hut beginning Chris had fought in the ring to championship level. He did so because he was on a mission; to reach England come what may. He fought and loved his way to his journey’s end. The odyssey took him many years and included the most incredible adventures and coincidences.
I have no wish to give anything away but I can assure readers of Chris Nand’s ‘Returned to Devil’s Island’ that, apart from it being an enjoyable and often riveting read there will be times for deep reflection.
There will be drama that will cause you to break off to recover your senses.
The odyssey ends with a twist that will so wring the hearts of readers I suggest Kleenex as a bookmark. At a certain revelation the reader will get up from their seat and say; ‘Well I’ll be damned.’
This book equals Boris Pasternak’s Doctor Zhivago. An offer has been made on the film rights.
Abajo con fotillo libro:
Returned to Devil’s Island is on sale at: Amazon, kindle e-book, Hemingway’s and David’s Book Shops in Los Boliches, Book World España.
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