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The Flame of Life

A Novel · Flame of Life

by Alan Sillitoe


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A portrait of individual and communal struggles to maintain authenticity and revolutionary fervor in 1960s England from award-winning, bestselling author Alan Sillitoe
The final installment of the William Posters Trilogy revolves around the plights and foibles of the Handley family commune, which set up camp at the home of the wealthy Myra Bassingfield. There, painter Albert Handley is pursuing a whirlwind existence of art, sex, and chaotic domestic life. Of his seven children, four are giving him particular grief. His eldest son, Cuthbert, has been kicked out of theological college; his eldest daughter, Mandy, is pregnant by her unstable husband; and two of his younger sons, Richard and Adam, are pillaging army manuals for subversive and revolutionary ends. To top it all off, Myra's lover, Frank Dawley, has returned from gunrunning in Algeria—and brought along his wife and two kids from Nottingham to live in the Buckinghamshire kibbutz.

Collective cohabitation soon reveals its downfalls. And when a young Spanish anarchist arrives with assassination on her mind, her trunk full of notebooks may condemn Frank for a sin committed in the African desert. As the community hangs by a thread, the very notion of revolution comes under scrutiny, begging the question: Can the fire of life burn, even when its flame is no longer in sight?

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Alan Sillitoe including rare images from the author's estate.

Publication Details

Open Road Media
Publication Date:
Flame of Life


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Alan Sillitoe (Author)

Alan Sillitoe (1928–2010) was a British novelist, poet, essayist, and playwright, known for his honest, humorous, and acerbic accounts of working-class life. Sillitoe served four years in the Royal Air Force and lived for six years in France and S...

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The Flame of Life
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