– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –
About the Author :
Simon Van der Velde was born and educated in Newcastle upon Tyne where he trained and practiced as a lawyer. Writing, however, was always the real passion, and Simon has now left the legal profession in order to concentrate on his writing.
Since completing a creative writing M.A. (with distinction) at University of Northumbria in 2011, Simon’s work has won and been short-listed for numerous awards including; The Yeovil Literary Prize, (twice), The Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal, The Wasafiri New Writing Prize, The Luke Bitmead Bursary, The Frome Short Story Prize, The Writers’ and Artists’ Short Story Prize, The Harry Bowling Prize, The Henshaw Press Short Story Competition and The National Association of Writers’ Groups Open Competition.
Simon is the founder and chair of Gosforth Writers Group and author of the widely acclaimed, Amazon bestseller, Backstories, ‘the stand-out most original book of the year’ in 2021. His literary crime novel, The Silent Brother is published on 16th June, 2022 by Northodox Press. Simon is currently working on both Backstories II and his follow-up crime novel, Dogwood.
Having travelled throughout Europe and South America, Simon now lives in Newcastle upon Tyne with his wife, labradoodle and two tyrannical children.
Title: The Silent Brother
Publication Date: 16th June, 2022
Price: Paperback – £ 8.99, Ebook – £2.99
Author: Simon Van der Velde
Publisher: Northodox Press
Available: Northodox.co.uk, Waterstones, Amazon, The Bound, & all good bookshops
Genres: Crime, urban, literary, contemporary and general fiction
Themes: Social justice, crime, nostalgia, the north-east, racism, family, love, redemption
When his beloved little brother is stolen away, five-year-old Tommy Farrier is left alone with his alcoholic mam, his violent step-dad and his guilt. Too young to understand what has really happened, Tommy is sure of only one thing. He is to blame.
Tommy tries to be good, to live-up to his brother’s increasingly hazy memory, but trapped in a world of shame and degradation he grows up with just two options; poverty or crime. And crime pays.
Or so he thinks.
A teenage drug-dealer for the vicious Burns gang, Tommy’s life is headed for disaster, until, in the place he least expects, Tommy sees a familiar face…
And then things get a whole lot worse.
After reading ‘The Silent Brother’ by Simon Van der Velde I needed a bit of a breather as it was, for me at least, a very intense read.
This book tells you the story of Tommy almost like a biography and it isn’t pretty and full of flowers and sunshine.
On the contrary, it’s dark and gritty, heart-wrenching and painfully realistic even in this day and age.
I hated the people around Tommy, although they too are the product of their situation, and felt hopeless at the choices Tommy made in his life.
I desperately wanted him to find a way out and find some kind of happily ever after he so deserved.
If he found it or not, I’m leaving in the middle, but although a bit unexpected in some way, I liked how Simon ended Tommy’s story.
An intense, heartbreaking and completely true portrait of life in Newcastle not so long ago.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds