Troubador Circles

Released: 01/12/2012

ISBN: 9781780883502

Format: Paperback

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Hidden Lives


This is a book about an ‘ordinary’ life, and in this age of celebrity worship we perhaps need reminding that there is no such thing as an average life.

Circles: Hidden Lives is the story of a remarkable woman, Gertrude Annie Stroud, by her granddaughter Ginny. Gertrude’s life is unique, with its personal tragedies and triumphs, but familiar to fellow travellers on the road between cradle and grave. While Circles describes this journey, its main theme is continuity. Ginny’s grandmother was born at the beginning of the 20th century and she lived into its final decade. During that time she encountered arguably one of the most progressive and destructive periods in human history. The world she entered in 1905 was still recovering from the death of Queen Victoria. The world she left in 1993, even without the effects of her Alzheimers, was unrecognisable. She witnessed some of the most momentous and horrific events. Yet through good times and bad, Gertrude and her family did what generations of ‘ordinary’ folk have always done: they carried on. 

“I had a notion to rescue this lifetime from oblivion and it became a promise to write this story someday. It was years later when I remembered my neglected intentions and went back to resuscitate them. I hope that this story will encourage more people to acknowledge the contribution of their own ancestors and perhaps even write about them. Too many histories, in particular female ones, have been lost,” says Ginny, behind her reason to write Circles.

Circles:?Hidden Lives will appeal to fans of adult biography, especially those with a specific interest in women’s lives and accounts of the 20th century.

What a delightful story. I really enjoyed reading it. The author has succeeded in inspiring me to write as well. The fact that I know so much about the setting is wonderful. Seldom in my job do I get the chance to read something for pleasure. I finished this book in about 2 days over Christmas and didn't want to put it down. With an interest in genealogy myself, I can see how useful this story might be for future generations. But it's the way that strong family values are passed on in varying degrees of effectiveness that I find most valuable. I've heard the saying "blood is thicker than water" on numerous occasions throughout my life and this book might provide some clues for anyone who needs to question it for good or bad.

by Glenn McMurray

As a new author, Virginia Stroud exhibits in this biography, a wonderful talent for making the reader feel as if he or she experienced the events which shaped the writer's life. Writing with heartfelt emotion, Ms. Stroud transports the viewer back into the days preceding WWII and then brings the reader forward to the present.

Although the plot primarily deals with the life of a wonderful, loving woman, many other characters are introduced and are shown to be relevant. Human frailties, along with inner strengths, are explored.

This book relates the challenges of life for a middle class family during the early years of the 20th Century; tales of the abominable treatment by the Japanese of American prisoners during WWII; challenges of living which bring sorrow where the resolution was not always best for everyone concerned; and includes many other stories.

Virginia Stroud has expressed the desire that her book would inspire others to write their own stories. By reading her story, one is impressed by the fact that ordinary people, living seemingly insignificant lives, do make substantial contributions to mankind ... and their stories bear telling.

This book is a lovely tribute to Ms. Stroud's grandmother. An absorbing story for anyone who likes biographies of the unpretentious, it is a thought-provoking effort of sharing the life of one not to be forgotten.

by Katherine Abbott

Very interesting. If you like history this is a good book along with a family story during the WWII. Well written

by Lee Lyn Carter

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