We Ain't Got No Drink, Pa can either be read as full-length eBook or in 3 serialised eBook-only parts.This is PART 1 OF 3.'We ain't got no drink, Pa.' I trembled as I spoke. Then somewhere inside me I found the anger, the courage to answer him back.'We don't have no grog cos you drank it all!'I knew he was going for me tonight, so I reckoned I might as well go down fightinWe Ain't Got No Drink, Pa can either be read as full-length eBook or in 3 serialised eBook-only parts.This is PART 1 OF 3.'We ain't got no drink, Pa.' I trembled as I spoke. Then somewhere inside me I found the anger, the courage to answer him back.'We don't have no grog cos you drank it all!'I knew he was going for me tonight, so I reckoned I might as well go down fighting after all. Growing up in the slums of 1920s and 30s Bermondsey, Hilda Kemp's childhood was one of chaos and fear. Every day was battleground, a fight to survive and a fight to be safe. For Hilda knew what it was to grow up in desperate poverty: to have to scratch around for a penny to buy bread; to feel the seeping cold of a foggy docklands night with only a thin blanket to cover her; to share her filthy mattress with her brothers and sisters, fighting for space while huddling to keep warm. She knew what it was to feel hunger - not the impatient growl of a tummy that has missed a meal; proper hunger, the type that aches in your soul as much as your belly. The eldest of five children, Hilda was the daughter of a hard drinker and hard hitter as well. A casual dockworker by day, a bare-knuckle fighter by night and a lousy drunk to boot, her pa honed his fists down the Old Kent Road and Blackfriars, and it was Hilda or her ma who bore the brunt of them at home. This is the powerful and moving memoir of Hilda's childhood growing up in dark, filthy, crime-ridden Bermondsey; a place where you knew your neighbours, where you kept your eyes down and your ears shut as defence against the gangs at war in the streets. It's a time when days were spent running wild down the docklands, jumping onto barges and stealing coal, racing through the dank back-streets of east London like water rats, dodging the milk cart or the rag-and-bone man. And out of this bleak landscape emerges a brave, resilient young girl whose life is a testament to the power of love and good humour. Moving, dazzling and sombre by turns, once opened this brilliant, seductive book will not let you rest....
|Title||:||'We Ain't Got No Drink, Pa': Part 1|
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||66 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
'We Ain't Got No Drink, Pa': Part 1 Reviews
This is the first 'misery memoir' I've ever read and if you are feeling up and need to be taken down this one will certainly do it for you. Well, to some extents it's not really a memoir as it's the granddaughter of subject of the tale of woes who actually put the words, based on being told stories in the past, memories of uncles and aunts, as well as research into local archives detailing the life of working class families in the south east of London in the inter-war years, into a cohesive format.And life for far too many, at that time (and to this day?) was truly dire. This was the land fit for heroes, with the homes that had been promised during, and immediately after, the 1914-18 – which proved to be a lie peddled to the masses so that they would be happy to see their men folk go and fight (and die – or be traumatised) in the trenches 'For King and Country'. Added to that the post-war economic conditions, which were made even worse with the Great Crash of 1929, and the likes of the hated Means Test – which treated the poor and unemployed in Britain in the 1930s as mere dirt to be tolerated but certainly not helped. This is the background to this memoir. If that wasn't enough added to all that we have a brutal, drunken bully of a father who would regularly beat his wife and eldest daughter. It is through the eyes of the daughter that the story is told.What is the most frustrating and annoying about such 'memoirs' is the lack of real fight in those who had to suffer under such conditions. The dog eat dog situation of getting work on the London docks is not challenged at all. The only positive stance taken by those marginalised and down-trodden slum dwellers was in the description of a battle against Mosley's Blackshirts (which barely takes a page). I'm not sure how historically accurate this point is as the major battle against the British Fascists was in Cable Street, on the other side of the river. But that's the sum total of the politics.There's nothing but acceptance of domestic abuse as well as abuse by a government and system that only changed in this country when, after defeating Fascism in Europe, the British working class wouldn't accept the old way of doing things after 1945. All we get in this memoir is the idea that Londoners will never be defeated, whatever the Luftwaffe might throw at them, that the poor will always stick together (but here only in the acceptance of their poverty and not in any solidarity to fight injustice and what was/is wrong in society). Even after the father gets violent against his family in front of the neighbours at a Christmas party everything goes on the same. No one is prepared or seems to want to learn. They get their dignity in adversity. They were born to suffer. And their Christianity aids in their oppression and exploitation. Prayers are said more than anything positive being done.They have a faith in a god, but they are always let down. Even when there's real chance to end all the violence within the family – wars are dangerous times even for those not on the front line and 'accidents' can happen – the father just sails through it.I accept domestic abuse can go on for many years but normally when somewhat hidden from the rest of the world – here the neighbours hear and see everything – but nothing changes.Even when the war ends and 'true love' is found there's still no reflection of the changing political scene. Churchill gets lauded, even though within weeks the old anti-working class thug and despiser of the poor is thrown out on his ear. Change takes place but however much this will have an impact on the people concerned they revert into their own domestic space. They remain the forelock tuggers of the beginning, bowing down to the the powerful.The story starts in a hideous slum but the very young children cowering before a bully and thug but it ends with an escape from the abuse, not with a challenge to such circumstances that others will, inevitably, fall into if the society does not change. They learn nothing from the experience. ' Why should I care about those who suffer in 'misery memoirs' when they have no concern for others?Some have wondered why women continue to produce such depressing novels/memoirs. They seem to be caught in a rut. Instead of accepting that such abuse and circumstances have been already widely disseminated they need to extirpate their personal past by concentrating on their individual case. It will bring tears to your eyes, whether out of pity or anger, but what else?Can't we have novels which will indicate how we can end such situations, not wait for the first opportunity to run away?
This free sample works perfectly. I read this and because I enjo Kemp's writing so much, I bought the whole book! I wasn't disappointed. The book got better and better. I definitely recommend this!
Cathryn Kemp is an incredible writer. In this book she tells the story of her grandmother growing up in the East End, and it is told entirely in Hilda's words. My book of the year.
Great read!!Admidst the squallor, there is love. At least for Mom and the kids. The Father, a drunk, makes life hard for them all. Sad, but a good story.