Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Charity Largesse

It shocked me to ear about the salaries taken out of charities by their executives. I thought charities were in business to help others not line the pockets of those who run them.
A parable from the bible sums this up: He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury, and He saw also a certain poor widow putting in two mites. So He said, “Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all; for all these out of their abundance have put in offerings for God,[a] but she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had.
Somebody reaches into their purse and gives from their taxed income believing that they are helping the cause. Before any help is given out their money has to pay the £150000 a year for the top person. Where has the idea of giving time to a charity gone? How can these people sleep easily in their comfortable beds with full stomachs at night while less money goes to the good cause.
In my novel An Ordinary Life I explore the way in which people justify their actions no matter how dubious.
Money laundering is illegal. Even Tom Houseman knows that. He, as an academic, makes a distinction between helping somebody to set up legitimate business and the source of the money.In my novel I explore the way in which people justify their actions no matter how unacceptable.
The novel follows the life of Tom Houseman. From his early childhood on the edge of a hard council estate to eminent Professor with a worldwide reputation and great wealth. The story explores the manner in which most people regard themselves as honest and law abiding although there are times and circumstances when they ignore the rules of behaviour or of some moral code. These people justify their actions by ignoring their conscience or making excuses for their behaviour. In extreme cases they give the impression that morality is not an issue in their case.
Tom Houseman has a boyhood friend called Derek from the council estate and, though their paths diverge after junior school, he stays loyal to his friend. Derek becomes the right hand man of the criminal Mr. Big and introduces Edward. During his life, Edward accepts opportunities presented by his friends and his brother. These enhance both his standing in society and his wealth. All the time, he ignores and denies the moral and legal implications of taking advantage of these offers. As time passes, he has to accept the implications of his choices.
Will he finally have to face these hard decisions or will he sail serenely on living, to him, this ordinary life?
It can be purchased from Amazon as a paperback or for download for all electronic readers.

Monday, 5 August 2013

A Ceremony Of Innocence

My novel A CEREMONY OF INNOCENCE explores the relationships in a family one summer. Mrs. Brookes is so excited that her sons Mark and Jim will be on holiday at home together for the first time for ages. Mark, the eldest son, left home after his A levels to go to sea. He is now an officer serving on an oil company's tankers. His brother Jim has just finished his studies at university and has been awarded a first class degree. Charlie their father is a shop steward at the local shipbuilders. There is the threat of redundancies at the yard following the reorganisation of the shipbuilding industry in the country. Both sons have the reputation of being left wing but differ in their attitude to life. Mark grabs every opportunity for happiness even if that means compromising his principles or upsetting his family. Time at home is short and he is determined to enjoy himself. Jim is very serious about his left wing causes and adds his weight and those of other left wing friends to the workers trying to stem the threat of redundancies in the yard. From this is the source of friction between brothers and between Mark and his father. Mrs Brookes struggles to maintain a calm home with the increasing tension. This is the background to the explosion between the brothers made worse by Mark's friends being able to exert influence. The novel explores the tensions bubbling in a family caused by differing attitudes to the way in which lives were lived. 
This is available as a paperback from Amazon and for download from the Kindle store for all electronic readers.