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by Ray Evans

Pub Date: March 19th, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-60037-378-7

A touching memoir of a child’s experience as a World War II evacuee in England.

At the age of six, Evans, along with thousands of other British children, was separated from his family, home and school and sent to the safety of the English countryside during WWII. In his memoir, the author recalls the emotions of a small child who misses his mother and family. While it may be easy for readers to become emotional when it comes to this kind of story, Evan’s touching account is indeed a tearjerker; he aptly recaptures his fear and the feeling of being lost as he made his way to his temporary home. He presents a tale of horror as he relives the memories of two homes where he stayed during the evacuation period. As a castoff evacuee, Evans was often mistreated by the families with whom he stayed, enduring what Western society today would consider child abuse. By the time the author reaches his third and final home, he loves it so much that he almost doesn’t want to leave. Evans’ illustrative writing capably paints each scene, making it easy to imagine the conditions in which he lived. In fact, it would be realistic to picture this cute young boy’s life portrayed on screen. Before the Last All Clear is a well-written account of a lovable protagonist who yearns for a sense of normalcy–all while remaining optimistic that the war will soon end and better days are ahead.

A beautiful memoir of WWII as seen through the eyes of a child.