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Farewell to the Hammer

John Young Simms
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'It was the best of times, it was the worst of times'

Dickens' words perfectly capture the spirit of this fascinating story of growing up amidst horses, trams, cobbles and pig's feet, in the Hammer district of Belfast's legendary Shankill Road at the height of the Great Depression.

We read of bathtimes in the yard, mangling clothes, horses drinking Guiness, and the magical occasion of young John's visit to the Egyptian mummy in the Belfast Museum.

In a work which is funny, affectionate and appalling by turns, John Young Simms skillfully gathers up the bright threads of childhood, and weaves them into a universal tale.

Book Details

ISBN 1 870132 55 6

Paperback 144 pages, 13 illustrations

Book Reviews

'Each tale swells in the mind, like grain in water, until the reader finds it necessary to pause, savour its taste, and go back over it again before moving the short distance to the next... not just memories and snippets, but a mother lode, a seam of rich, sad, funny remembering: a lovely story well told' Sam McAughtry

''It is a funny, provocative, sad and realistically told story which deserves to be widely read. It is also well written.' Gerry Adams, Andersonstown News

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