New book in­spired by war vet­eran neigh­bour

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

AN­DREW Har­ris’s lat­est book was a life­time in the making, in­spired by his own ac­tions as a curious eightyear-old, quizzing his war vet­eran neigh­bour about his time in the war.

“I was just a kid, an­noy­ing him with ques­tions. Most war veter­ans of that era don’t like talk­ing about it, so that’s been the ba­sis for this novel,” he said.

The book fol­lows a young man whose love en­dures the night­mar­ish hor­ror of the First World War on the front line, part fic­tion­alised but with true his­tor­i­cal ref­er­ences.

“The book took me a solid year and-a-half worth of re­search­ing and writ­ing,” Mr Har­ris said.

“It’s told from an English per­spec­tive but there is a huge Aus­tralian sec­tion, and the anti-war mes­sage is strong, re­gard­less of where you’re from.

“It’s been some­thing I’ve wanted to write since I was seven or eight years old. I’ve had it in the back of my mind al­most my whole life.”

The lo­cal TAFE teacher said 1600 men died on the first day of the war “which com­pared to th­ese days, is a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber”.

“(And) the 100th an­niver­sary of the first day of World War One is in about seven months, so it’s quite timely.”

Avail­able on ama­, the book, A Time Since Passed, is the sev­enth novel Mr Har­ris has had pub­lished.

“The anti-war mes­sage is strong, re­gard­less of where you’re from.”

PUB­LISHED AU­THOR: An­drew Har­ris and his lat­est novel, avail­able now on ama­

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