Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Tales from the Sea by Eddie Gubbuins

As I wrote at the start of my semi -autobiographical novel Tales From The Sea, I had been destined for a life at sea for as long as I can remember. In fact, I can recall vividly even now the first time my family started to take it for granted that I was going to sea when I left school. 
It was at one of our family get togethers when I was about six years old. Suddenly Granddad put his large hand on my shoulder and announced in a voice which brooked no argument. “ Edmund is going to sea when he grows up. He will be the first Captain of a foreign going ship in the family.” The sound of his voice dropped into the sudden silence as everybody in the room nodded sagely. On hearing this and feeling his large hand squeezing my shoulder, I did not protest. I suppose at six years old, I did not fully appreciate the true implication of what was being decided on my behalf. Oh, many times I had sat at the feet, so to speak, of my grandfather and listened to his stories of when he was at sea on White Star Liners. He had talked of the people, the ships and the sea much of it incomprehensible to me. He made  life at sea sound so glamorous, mysterious and fascinating that I had been attracted to the sea from that time. 
Tales of the Sea is a  novel based on my life at sea between 1957 and 1969. Going to sea and leaving home were very dramatic events in my life. In its pages the reader will meet the characters with whom I sailed and their antics. They will experience nights ashore and visit through my eyes exotic places. Read about the different ships, old and new as they plough across the oceans carrying the products of the world. Throughout there is the sea and its dangers. The sea can be angry or benevolent. There are blissful days or violent storms.
During my life lecturing at a British University after leaving the sea, when my students' attention appeared to be wandering as we discussed licencing in the bus industry or something similar, I would entertain them by relating some of the events that had happened during my time at sea. They encouraged me to write these stories down. I composed a series of short stories out of which came the novel Tales From The Sea.

The essence of the novel can be summed up in a poem:
The Call
The sea is calling, always calling
Even when the sailor has long left voyaging behind.
The sea calls, ever calls,
Over the noise of this sometimes dreadful life.
To sail away , to leave this life behind,
But to where?
That is what adds to the thrill.
Let the voyage be long or short,
Let the oceans be calm or fierce,
In the urge to sail away,
Lies man's eternal quest
For something new.
Why oh why does man always strive after the new
When accepting the present would save a lot of heart ache.
It has long been a mystery to me but,
More than in any other profession,
The sea  offers a greater chance to satisfy this need.
The sailor never arrives
Because each new port is a stepping stone to the next
And on to the next
Until the nomadic lifestyle grows too much.
It maybe that the sailor observes other people
Settling into a pattern of life which brings rewards
Such things as family and home,
Anchored to other views of living
Rather than constantly on the move.
So the sailor leaves the sea
And puts down roots.
Or does he?
The sound of a seagull screaming ,
The wind moaning around the roof of his house 
The sound of waves lapping on the shore
Will awaken in the hidden recesses of his mind
The longing to feel the excitement once more
As the ship goes silent,
Ready to leave for the sea.

The novel can be purchased from Amazon as a paperback or for downloading to kindle or other e readers. Also from www.smashwords.com for downloading and www.createspace.com as a paperback.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

EddieGubbins: Ladybird Books

EddieGubbins: Ladybird Books: Ladybird Books is 100 years old this year. Loughborough has these benches in the shape of Ladybird Books spread around the town p...

Ladybird Books

Ladybird Books is 100 years old this year. Loughborough has these benches in the shape of Ladybird Books spread around the town plus a statue of a by reading one of the books.
It is a pity that when they were taken over by another publisher, the whole operation was moved away from Loughborough. In a small way it echoes what has happened in the steel and other industry.

Saturday, 17 October 2015

A Ceremony of Innocence and Innocence Exploded by Edmund Gubbins

A Ceremony of Innocence and its sequel Innocence Exploded concern the life of Mark Brookes and his family during the 1980's. These are adult novels with explicit sex scenes.

Two brothers are at home on holiday much to the delight of their mother. It was the first time they had been at home together at the same time for several years. Their father is the union convener at the local shipyard and he leads the men out on strike against proposed redundancies at the same time as the brothers arrive home. Though on the surface both brothers support their father, underneath the surface there simmers the stew of disagreement. Mark, the elder brother, is fresh from months at sea as a ships officer and refuses to compromise his upwardly mobile lifestyle or his friends for the sake of family harmony. He lives for the moment and grabs any opportunity for happiness that might come along. He does not appear to weigh up the consequences of his actions.
Jim, freshly graduated from university, supports his father passionately and without question. He is far left in his philosophy and takes part in many protest rallies.
Can the brothers find a way to compromise their position and fulfil their mother’s wish for a happy few weeks or will their anger boil over into open conflict and family break up?

The sequal to A Ceremony of Innocence continuing the conflict between the two brothers Mark and James.  Having left the sea for a career in the City of London, Mark still lives for the chance to have pleasure with disregard to any consequences. When tragedy strikes will Mark accept James' help?

Available from Amazon and Createspace.

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Thrillers by Eddie Gubbins

Brotherly Love
Edmund J Gubbins

Ken Flood lived a quiet life with his wife and two daughters in Plymouth, working as a lecturer in the University, minding his own business and relatively happy and content. Until, that is, his brother Norman arrived unexpectedly one day asking for help in a proposition which, to Ken, appeared to verge on an attempt pull him into the murky waters on the edges of crime. Ken was forced to answer the question of what is more important to him, family loyalty or straightforward loyal citizenship? Was he to question what was being asked of him by his brother or just help in any way he could? What happens if the activity he is asked to undertake looks very dodgy, if not criminal to Ken?

It all started innocently enough when Ken arrived at work one early one morning to discover his brother Norman in his office seeking help.  Ken has to decide quickly whether to help his brother out of brotherly love or let his brother face his unknown pursuers alone? Reluctantly Ken agrees to help and soon finds himself outside the law being chased by people he does not know, trying to deliver a mysterious package given to him by his brother to a man in London. Running in panic, not know who are his enemies, who are his friends, not even whose side his brother is on, Ken draws some of his close friends into his game, the only source of help he can find. In a dramatic climax after fear filled weeks of running and hiding from enemies he could not identify, Ken comes to know the truth about his brother and how Ken has been fooled.

Ken realises the problem is his brother and he soon believes Norman is on the other side, though sides in this game are not easily distinguished to Ken. Finally in a fit of loyalty, Ken decides to help his brother escape from the country only to see him gunned down while escaping. Through this Ken finds the truth and vows never to become involved again.

It is a story of fear, of somebody out of their depth in a world made strange, of chance encounters with people willing to help, of finding hidden depths behind a placid exterior and of the extent which loyalty to ones family can led on down paths best left unexplored.

Legacy from Mary
Eddie Gubbins

Ken Flood is an academic and events in the wider world do not effect his way of life. He has recovered from the incident where he became involved in his brother Norman's mysterious world to go back to his quiet academic world. Then his friends Joshua and Mary die in suspicious circumstances. They have never met. The only connection there is between them, beside friendship with Ken, is a country called Mengambi. Joshua is a Mengambian studying under Ken for his Ph D. He is an outspoken critic  of the present government of Mengambi. Maria undertook short courses in the country on the subject of strategic management. Suddenly Ken is caught up in the game of power exercised in Mengambi when he agreed to take Mary’s place teaching on the short courses in Mengambi. All he set out to do was find out what actually happened to his friends  whether there was more to his friends deaths than had been reported. His brother asks him to keep his eyes open and gather any information he can while he is in the country. Can he survive the pressure from his employer in Mengambi and the request by his brother to gather information? 

The third novel involving Ken Flood and his brother Norman is now in its first draft with only half a chapter to write. It has the working title of For The Love of Pauline.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Immigrants are people! 2

I could not believe it. I was sitting listening to Theresa May addressing the Conservative Party conference. What must the rest of the world think of the UK after hearing this diatribe? She spoke with contempt of people from other cultures and other places. She was economical with the truth when talking about the cost of immigration. It has been established that immigrants contribute positively to the economy. Shame on you Mrs May.

An Ordinary Life by Edmund Gubbins

An Ordinary Life by Edmund J Gubbins
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.
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?

Buy from Amazon, Createspace and Smashwords as an ebook for down loading to most electronic readers or as a paperback.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Running After Maria by Eddie Gubbins

Running after Maria by Eddie Gubbins is the story of the progress of one man’s love and descent into depression after tragedy strikes, his anger at other people trying to help and his redemption in the arms of somebody who admired the dedication of other people who try to help. It explores the question of whether a person can really be saved after a devastating loss especially of somebody that person loves deeply?

James Ashleigh was happy. He was doing what he loved. Sailing the oceans but having plenty of opportunities to take part in the ritual of the chase, as Bill his friend called the pursuit of women. Life became even more pleasant when James met Maria at a party on a ship called the “Beaver “ in port in  Helsinki. Now he thought he had everything. A life at sea, the anticipation of arriving in Helsinki and love making like he had never know before. Then unexpectedly came his son, at first a question mark over his happiness but finally accepted. For reasons which James did not fully understand, Maria did not want to marry but after a long separation while James sailed to places other than Helsinki, they decided to get married and his happiness was now complete.Then came that night, after making love on the ship, when the car crashed on the way home to see his son and Maria was gone. Life now became a burden. The question was what was James to do about his son? James abandons his former life and hides away from his friends .He  began what he thought of later as his descent into hell. Drink became his comfort, women were to be taken brutally when the chance arose with no ideas of forming steady relationships. No matter what advise from his worried friends offered, James hid himself away and tried to forget about  Maria and his son. One day in a night club he met Henri, a friend of his best mate's wife June. June, who he had virtually raped one day when she came to try to help him recover his self respect but even that had not stopped her attempts  to comfort him. Henri changed his life.

This is the story of James' rise to happiness when life seemed perfect, his descent into unbearable grief and his final redemption in the arms of Henri. It is the story of how one man reacts to the end of all he holds dear in his life, how even in the depths of his despair, he still finds people who care even if he did not and of the final acceptance that life is for the living. While not forgetting the dead, James realises he must look to the future.

Can be purchased from, Amazon, Createspace and and Smashwords