The Mango Orchard : The Extraordinary True Story of a Family Lost and Found Paperback
by Robin Bayley
As a child, Robin Bayley was enchanted by his grandmother's stories of Mexican adventures: of bandits, wild jungle journeys, hidden bags of silver and a narrow escape from the bloody Mexican Revolution.
But Robin sensed there was more to these stories than anyone knew, and so he set out to follow in the footsteps of his great-grandfather. "The Mango Orchard" is the story of parallel journeys, a hundred years apart, into the heart of Latin America.
Undaunted by the passage of time and a paucity of information, Robin seeks out the places where his great-grandfather Arthur 'Arturo' Greenhalgh travelled and lived, determined to uncover his legacy.
Along the road Robin encounters witches, drug dealers, a gun-toting Tasmanian Devil and an ex-Nazi diamond trader.
He is threatened with deportation, offered the protection of Colombian guerrilla fighters and is comforted by the blessings of los santos.
He falls in love with a beautiful Guatemalan girl with mystical powers and almost gives up his quest, until a sense of destiny drives him on to western Mexico and the discovery of much, much more than he had bargained for.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 336 pages, maps
- Publisher: Cornerstone
- Publication Date: 21/08/2010
- Category: Travel writing
- ISBN: 9781848092242
- EPUB from £4.99
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Review by nicx27
This is the story of the author, Robin Bayley, following in his great-grandfather's footsteps and travelling to Mexico. Arthur Greenhalgh, or Arturo as he was called in Mexico, had travelled there at the end of the 19th century to run a cotton mill. Robin travelled there almost 100 years later to put flesh to the bones of the stories that his grandmother had told him about her father's time in Mexico.This is a really charming and, at times, funny story. There's a quote on the front cover of the paperback from Who Do You Think You Are magazine, and it really is like something you would see on that programme, as the author uncovers various information and meets people connected to his family. I found this an engrossing tale. I loved looking at the pictures in the centre, particularly those of Arthur, as they brought the characters to life for me. I'd recommend this to anybody who enjoys a good story of family life, particularly a true one. Excellent stuff.