This is an unsparing telling, from experience, of two strokes and two periods of recovery in a period of over twenty years:
'…All I can do with honesty is to set down some of my experiences since March, 2000, in the hope someone may benefit from them, even if only slightly…'
'…I don't know if he could understand anything of what I was saying, although I have to doubt it. He was telling me to calm down and rest. Then it went dark.'
'…It would be good to record that the sunbeams broke into the ward to herald the new dawn ... They didn't. The morning light was sombre. Still, my darkest night was over.'
LIGHTNING STRIKES TWICE is a detailed recounting of the experiences of an author who had two severe strokes and underwent two long periods of recovery and rehabilitation over a period of twenty years. The story is told with a lightness of touch and a generous helping of humour. The World itself has taken some hard knocks over the same period and Tom East does not try to ignore these. Nor does he forget the important part played by others in his recovery. To quote directly from what he writes: 'The story is by no means all dark. If I have learned anything since the Millennium, it is how ready to be helpful, concerned, and considerate in a non-patronising way almost everyone has been. I have been given an object lesson in the finest qualities of human nature' and 'The formal dedication to my family at the front of this book is richly deserved. No-one has helped me more than they. Yet I must also thank friends, other relatives, former colleagues, medical and other professionals of all kinds, acquaintances and even a large number of complete strangers, some of whose names I never found out, for the genuine kindness they have shown to me.'
If you have yourself survived any kind of stroke, someone close to you has, or you are reading for more than purely scientific reasons, this book will be of interest to you.
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About the Author
Latest from Tom East (available 23rd March, 2020) is the non-fiction A FIFTIES’ CHILDHOOD. This examines in careful and unsentimental detail the post war decade through the eyes of one who grew up in it.
Prior to this was the second ELDRITCH collection, WISH MAN'S WOOD. This was preceded by a second edition of the first, THE EVE OF ST ELIGIUS.
Other recent books include three very different novels. The most recent was THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ST JUDAS. Little is known about Judas Iscariot - he is a symbol of all things bad rather than a person - but what if his influence on the early church was altogether more significant? What if he was nothing less than the writer of the first gospel, upon which the canonical gospels are based? And what if manuscript fragments were found in Iraq on the eve of the Western invasion in 2003?
Novels prior to this were the 100,000-word TOMMY'S WAR: JULY 1914, an unusual take on the month before WWI and THE GREENLAND PARTY (79,000 words). The latter is a 'whodunit', although with an out-of-the-ordinary setting and a strange motive for the original murder.
All of the above are available as e-books or paperbacks in a number of places across the world.
Coming later this year is a dark novel, THE KA OF STEPHEN CHARLES.
See www.benybont.org/ for more details.
Earlier Tom was the writer of many works of fiction, commercial articles, essays, reviews, 'other prose' and poetry. He was also the author of six (print) books.
He was born in London, although of Welsh family and has lived in Wales for many years.