Troubador Twenty Five Million Ghosts

Released: 28/09/2017

ISBN: 9781788033145

eISBN: 9781788030021

Format: Paperback/eBook

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Twenty Five Million Ghosts


War and devastation made us. What is past is past and resulted in you, me and everybody else. We are all haunted by the ruptured history that created us. Steve lives a reasonably content and secure life in early retirement. He is dealing with the impending death of his mother, out-of-control garden ants and his own need for both security in and understanding of this world. He is assisted by an unusual Roman Catholic priest as he copes with loss while reviewing how his family history reflects the new world that was inevitably born from the major wars of the past. He recognises that his story is everybody’s story; we are all the result of destruction and violent change. His reflections and adventures lead him to look at the changes in the world, to commit a crime, to recall the stories of the fear, gore, loss and love that war generates. Steve shows you who you are. He shows that his story is your story, only the details vary. By seeing the slaughter, murder, evil and good that war provokes he shows you why you are. The horrors of the family history take us to the First World War Western Front, the Second World War D-Day, the Holocaust and the Russian Front. He also provides tips for dealing with ants. Some books grab you by the throat and pull you into a few hours of escape. Other books, this book, take you gently by the hand and lead you towards a new view of the world and your place in it. Twenty Five Million Ghosts mourns those who have been lost or never existed because of our terrible propensity for violence. It also celebrates those who only exist because of it.

Books Monthly

Twenty Five Million Ghosts tells the story of the author's past relatives experiences throughout wars and is a tribute to those who have been lost, failed to exist, or damaged due to wars. I found this to be a really interesting and read it in a couple of hours. It was written well and the main characters are likeable. The lasting impression has left me thinking philosophically about a concept I had never considered before.

by Ashley Hoffman

One mans look at his family and how all our histories are entwined. A look at how War has killed so many people and that so many people were not born because of war. This is a fascinating book which is obviously well researched and leaves the reader pondering how mankind have inflicted so much on each other. The concept of twenty five million is one I have never heard before. It is really interesting and something to think about.

by Julie Hosford

Twenty Five Million Ghosts by Steve Aitchsmith is a book I requested from NetGalley and the review is voluntary. This is a very odd but appealing book. Somehow this man can just talk about his family and flow seamlessly from one thing to another and drag me along as if I am caught on a line. It is not only what he says but how he says things that is so intriguing. I feel I know his family, I am in the battle lines, I am looking through the wires at the concentration camps at the people, I am holding a leg to a dead soldier, and it all seems so real. He made me feel this. Just his simple rambling and gentle soothing ways lead me forward and back and I couldn't stop. I was helpless. I was trapped on the line and followed at he lead me to wars and back, to his many excursions on the side. It was a fascinating journey and the next thing I knew, the book ended. I was exhausted emotionally and needed time to process this long trip I never expected to take today. My heart ached, my chest throbbed, and my eyes stung. I don't think I could read this again but I am glad I read this, very glad. It opened me up, I felt something....more today. Thank you.

by Montzalee Whitmann

I am holding a leg to a dead soldier, this was also a memory of my fathers when he fought during ww2.

This a novel of war and really gets you thinking about the people and the impact that these events cause.

it is such an emotional and memorable read you can't help but think and analyse it for days after you have read it

You have to read it to feel it's effect.

by Tracy Shephard

I just loved this book and couldn’t put it down. As my family’s historian I understand where he is coming from and share his views on life.
A definite “must read”.

by Kaye Hayes

Steve Smith

Steve has been a brewery worker, a police officer, a para-legal and a teacher lecturing in uniformed public services and law. He has worked alongside major investigations, Government departments and the military.

He has previously published some magazine articles and self-published:

- Surviving the Law, an advice book for public service personnel facing disciplinary action, in his actual name of S.A.Smith (now out of print and probably out of date).

- Gingerbread, a short story about Nazi human experimentation (now out of print).

He went into policing in the seventies after serious differences between himself and trade unions obliged him to withdraw his union membership. Since this was a time of closed shop he was only able to work in uniformed public services,

After policing he retrained as a lawyer, discovered he did not enjoy working in legal practice and retrained again as a teacher. He lectured for eight years until Government policies (this time from the other end of the political spectrum) led to his redundancy.

He sees himself as a liberal libertarian and has been accused of being quixotic which he considers a compliment.

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