Prodigal Childby E. David Moulton
Fact and fiction converge in this uplifting new novel which chronicles the life of English songwriter Eddie Connor. Much of the story takes place in England during the 1950s on the tough streets of London's East End, an area of high crime and police corruption. Eddie is part of the first generation of teenagers after World War II. They wanted to be heard and noticed, so they created their own fashions and took the music from America half a world away and made it their own-first jazz, then rock-n-roll and the blues. This was the generation that gave birth to the Beatles and the Rolling Stones and what was later referred to in America as the British Invasion.
Prodigal Child is the story of a talented young singer-songwriter who might have been part of the "Invasion" but for certain twists of fate in his early years. In later years, he is able to put the past behind him and become a successful artist and businessman, eventually returning to his first love: music. And to the glory that eluded him during the 1960s.
With the inclusion of several of Moulton's original song lyrics, Prodigal Child is a must for music lovers, as well as those who grew up in the 1950s and 1960s.
The answers might look something like E. David Moulton's Prodigal Child, the story about a child from England's post-war generation. Moulton gives us the life of Eddie Conner, the son of a war veteran and dockworker.
- Moomin Books
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)
Meet the Author
E. David Moulton is a Writer and Songwriter. He previously had a successful career as a builder of racing bicycles in England and in the United States. Bikes he built were used in World Championships, The Tour de France, and Olympic Games. Originally from England David has lived in the US since 1979.
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Prodigal Child defies categorization - it is a study of pop culture, a journey into spiritual awakening, a real world drama with an autobiographical context and a deep look into the culture of post-war England. What captured and held my attention were the central character's roller-coaster ride from self-believer to spiritual-believer. The characters in this book are complex and believable and the descriptions of Eddie Conner's pain and suffering tugged at my heart and left me convinced the author was describing himself. The era of post-war England is captured in stark details as a place and time where artistic creativity seemed unlikely beneath the steely determination of a rebuilding nation. The author¿s intent is to deliver his message on creativity, success and spirituality, in it he seems to be saying that while we are most creative when we are running and we run fastest when we are running from ourselves, we must also learn when to stop and let success catch up with us. Prodigal Child will appeal to would-be musicians or those who have entertained dreams of being a musician as well as those who have learned the hard way how difficult life can be when we create our own obstacles. The author writes in craftsmanship style, building and connecting the story in a logical, geometrical unit only to break the pattern on occasion and express himself poetically via songwriting.
Growing up in the aftermath of WW II in London, Eddie Conner learns only one thing from his alcoholic father, how to box. Unfortunately, this legacy does not come with any lessons on self-control, so his ability to defend himself frequently lands him in trouble with the authorities, be they teachers, employers or corrupt police constables. Fortunately for Eddie, he has two gifts that compensate for this. The first is an artistic gift that allows him at different times in his life to be a sketch artist, painter, singer, musician, and sculptor. The second gift in Eddie's life is an unlikely mentor, an American GI, a Native American named Running Horse stationed outside of London during the War. Running Horse teaches Eddie that there is an immanent, creative Spirit that fills the universe and can touch receptive and artistic souls like his. Ostensibly, Prodigal Child is the story of Eddie Conner's long road to fame. More importantly, though, it is about his search for accountability and artistic expression that is frustrated by his tendency to solve his problems with his fists. His struggle to overcome this takes him from brawler to successful artist, but along the way he misses a number of opportunities. As a boy he ruins an opportunity to join St. Paul's Cathedral Choir when he punches Nigel, an arrogant rich kid who taunts Eddie for his lower class status. Eddie's first and last performance becomes memorable, both for his beautiful voice and this stunning disruption. This becomes a pattern in Eddie's young life. As a young man, a street fight costs Eddie his chance to be at the forefront of the British Invasion and his first appearance on television is an enormous success that ends in his arrest. With each episode, the reader empathizes with Eddie because his young life is filled with injustices, although his ultimate problem is his temper. However, Eddie's demons and his gifts create a tension that leads to maturity. Even as he misses early opportunities for fame, his talent saves him when he is at his lowest points. In jail his paintings and his music raise him above the lot of the common inmate and lead to work as a welder after his release. His work as an industrial welder becomes a career in artistic welding and eventually takes him to California where he rediscovers his interest in his guitar. This leads in turn to a second chance at a career in music in the 1990's. As Eddie fumbles toward self-control and accountability, he finds himself more and more in tune with the Creative Spirit of the universe. His life, his art, and his relationships become more fulfilling as he learns not to squander second chances. Who among us is not our own worst enemy? Which of us does not wish for a second chance? Which of us does not have an inner artist trying to break free? Prodigal Child is a satisfying and charming read because it deals convincingly with these very personal, yet universal, issues.
Prodigal Child explores the life of Eddie Conner, whose superb talent is matched only by the obstacles he encounters on his journey through self-hood. Although unfortunate circumstances plague his youth, Eddie carries with him the seed of a curious philosophy planted by a childhood friend that keeps him safe, emotionally and psychologically, through all his trials. Later in adulthood, this seed blooms into a spiritual awakening, thereby redeeming our protagonist and placing his struggles into a refreshing perspective. E. David Moulton relates the rise, fall and rebirth of our hero in a succinct, matter-of-fact style, merging the boundaries between fiction, biography and parable. Prodigal Child is an easy read, a delightful reminder of life's uncanny way of matching every sorrow and misfortune with an equal or greater joy.
I truly enjoyed the journey of a boy's life through manhood and learning lessons through his eyes. Chapters 27 and 28 captured the essence of what this boy learned in his early years and gave me a true sense of how to use 'the force' or the spirit of nature in my own life. This is a wonderful book for anyone interested in personal growth - and a great story! It reads like an autobiography, which makes it all so believable and workable in real-life. Thanks for a great read!
From Great Britain to the U.S., E. David Moulton¿s modern day, Rock and Roll combination of Mark Twain adventures and more subtle learning experiences spans five decades and is fast moving with creative twists and surprising spiritual turns. Main character Eddie Connor breaks into boyhood at full force dealing with the World War II bombing of London and an abusive, emotionally distant father while still managing to enjoy Tom Sawyer-like antics on the Thames and around town. Moulton¿s unassuming, straight forward style of writing fills the pages with matter of fact points and clearly defined characters who are funny, artistic, and sometimes detestable. Eddie is a thinking man learning not to think too much. He is a passionate soul trying not to teeter too far over the edge into self destruction. His reasons and chosen roads are well explained and his fate is not always what he has in mind. His ¿less traveled¿ roads lead him away from the explosion of the music scene in which he is a natural leader and into much seedier worlds he never dreamed he¿d have to be a part of. Moulton conjures several believable guides along the way who not only come to Eddie¿s aid but are strong, peaceful reminders of what most of us naturally seek¿a reason to be, a way to make a difference, and an inner peace. The song lyrics throughout the book are not only entertaining and catchy but serve a non-superfluous purpose by adding to the plot¿s general flow. Though the main medium is music beginning before the famous ¿British Invasion¿ and continuing for decades beyond, the main character has the ability to fade from one art form only to become prolific at another, which leads to the question, ¿Aren¿t all creative endeavors ultimately connected?¿ Moulton seems to think so and to prove so in his novel. As an author, he seems to be a believer in transcending 21st century popular sensationalism to embrace the desires and accomplishments of a regular person with talent and dreams. However, there is no lack of imagination. Eddie¿s accomplishments and mistakes are those of a hero and a human. He is fallible yet teachable. He is ten parts angry, emotional, and unrealistic in his expectations and ninety parts driven to become better in every way. In other words, he is the characterization of a true artist. It is a pleasure to watch him cling to his expectations and to witness the creative influences and timing that shape this boy into a man.
I can¿t believe how this book made me feel I cried, I laughed, I cried laughing! Highly recommended
I bought this book out of curiosity because I am a musician and share the same last name as the author. It turned out to be one of the best books I have read in a long time. I can highly recommend it. The story of an English songwriter is riveting and holds the reader¿s attention page after page. I stayed up way past my bedtime on many occasions because I could not put it down. It reminded me a little of ¿Angela¿s Ashes¿ in the early part of the book but nowhere near as depressing. In fact this is an uplifting book that left me with nothing but good feelings. Dialogue is especially good and the authors use of the various English dialects is not overdone and is made easy for the American reader. It adds charm to the characters, as does the humor, which often comes in tense moments when you least expect it. Without giving away any of the book¿s secrets I will say I loved the ending and as I finished the last page and closed the book I said ¿wow¿ and sat there for a few minutes basking in the experience. Not too many books have had that effect on me.