Reviews for The Kid on Slapton Beach


D-Day 6th June 1944
and just five weeks before …

The Kid on Slapton Beach
Published by Wight Diamond Press
ISBN 978-0-9535123-2-4

This book is beautiful. You can’t stop reading even though you don’t want it to end. The writing is sparse yet full of feeling without a trace of sentimentality. I understood and cared about these people. In this imaginative tale about families who reacted to a true historical event, I wanted to know what happened next. A jewel! Actress June Brown – Dot Cotton in EastEnders

Superb on so many levels… I couldn’t put it down. I can see the landscape, feel its texture, smell it. And I can see twelve year old Harry, and all those villagers and their struggles. It’s powerful. I found myself close to tears when I read it and smiling too. A wonderful book! Michelle Magorian, author of ‘Goodnight Mr Tom’                   

 I read it in one go…a great story and very well told. Anna Home – Chair of the Children’s Film and Television Foundation

A great read that rushes to a brilliant climax! John Ovenden  ABC Broadcaster and Journalist Australia

The book paints a vivid picture of the steely grey realities of war… wind torn coastlines, steaming woollen jumpers drying by the fire… uniformed American strangers…  hushed words and small bowls of soup… displacement and fear by the families forced from their homes. Isle of Wight County Press

A pivotal moment in the war… through the eyes of someone was there – through fiction. Joint Forces Journal USA

Based on the true story of US troops descending on Slapton Sands to practise for the D-Day landings, this tale is told through the eyes of twelve year old Harry, who is one of the three thousand local people who had to leave their homes to make way for a secret military exercise that had a tragic outcome. Well researched and vividly told, this book is a compelling choice for both local readers and those visiting the area for the first time, who want to learn more about the secrets of the past that this coastline holds. Harbour Bookshop, Kingsbridge, Devon

Other Reader Comments

An evocative and interesting story, very well and sensitively written

Riveting from start to finish this heart-wrenching drama of uprooted lives is beautifully written. The dialogue between the characters is natural and convincing. The atmospheric descriptions of domestic situations and coastal scenes with the moods of the sea make you feel that you are actually there.

An excellent read and a neat coincidence that the 70th Anniversary of D-Day is so imminent.

I couldn’t put this book down – poignant and powerful, I found myself rooting for Harry. Embracing the tragic, the author has not side-stepped the horrors of war, yet it is still written in such a way that a young person can read and take on board the circumstances. This book is thoroughly recommendable!

Got more and more riveting as the story progressed. Very interesting and important part of British history. This book is a pleasure to read.

I enjoyed reading “The Kid on Slapton Beach”. What an evocative, emotional journey this book gave me.

Set against the background of a true, but almost unbelievable event in the second world war this is an exciting and moving story of a young boy coming to terms with the reality of life, death and growing up. Fast moving and compelling, a very good read.

Will keep you hooked to the end. Very poignant read

Loved this book, really captured the era

A brilliant read and one that leaves one wanting more – or a sequel.

A very good read on a subject only recently brought to public attention.

Very interesting book, beautifully written.

I enjoyed reading “The Kid on Slapton Beach”. What an evocative, emotional journey this book gave me.

A well-paced story based on the real events of the evacuation of a Devon village in preparation for D-day (although the villagers could not know why they were being evicted). Telling the story of the uprooted locals and the tragedy of a botched training exercise on a Devon beach through the eyes of a young boy whose own father is missing on mainland Europe, Ms Thompson conveys the realities of wartime, where school bullies and hostile traders exist alongside others who are kind and caring, and where everybody only has a partial picture of the overall canvas. The momentum increases as the story heads towards the denouement, with Harry placing himself in danger trying to retrieve his treasured reminders of his father. Highly recommended.

SLAPTON SANDS good book based on facts. I hope it gets widely read especially amongst the younger generation who have no comprehension of what went on in those dark days

Fantastic read – based on a true story.

Absolutely brilliant – sensitively written from the child’s perspective but covering an amazing historical event – would suit any child from about 10 up and all adults. very moving

A gripping story about the Second World War

I couldn’t put this book down. It describes the monumental carnage that occurred on Slapton Sands in June 1944. I thoroughly recommend this as a holiday read.

Good reading and couldn’t put it down. Brilliant. Will look for more stuff from this writer. Recommended to some of my friends

Was recommended this book by a friend. It’s an excellent book and an excellent book to read. In fact I couldn’t put it down

This really reflects what actually happened, but from an 11 year old boy’s perspective. Easy to read.

A young British boy is caught up in an American tragedy in World War 2. Harry is already missing his father, lost in action on mainland Europe, when his world is turned upside down by the evacuation of his village, requisitioned for preparations by American forces for the D-day landings. Of course, Harry and the villagers don’t know why they’re being evicted from their homes. The characters come to life: Harry, his mother, his little sister, GI Mike White who befriends Harry, and the warden who seems to have designs on his mother. The story is well-paced, with the momentum building towards the final scenes. Based on true events which were kept secret for fifty years, this is sympathetic both to the baffled villagers, their comfort destroyed, and the young American troops a long way from home who have come to confront a common foe. Highly recommended.

Buy it in   Dartmouth,    Kingsbridge,      Start Bay Stores in Torcross in Devon
Order it at your favourite bookshop wherever you are – available worldwide

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