Liverpool, Forgotten Landscapes, Forgotten Lives

John Hussey

Online Price :  £14.99 (see Amazon for latest deals)

Occasionally a publication about Liverpool history comes along that is meticulously researched, has a wealth of original subject matter, and is beautifully illustrated and presented. This is one of those volumes. It is a joy to handle, there is a depth of quality throughout, both in the text and layout. John Hussey has published several works on his hometown before, including works on the port's links with the American Confederacy, a study of the sculptor John Gibson, and a compilation of local topics in The Light of Other Days (2009). In his latest work he has produced a fascinating collection of stories covering a wealth of frequently obscure Liverpool history.

We are taken through a vivid description of the early growth of the town in the eighteenth century, before the author uses the 'illuminations' of the town in 1813, following the demise of Napoleon, to throw his own light on the prosperity of the port during the time of the French wars. Nineteenth century poverty, ship wrecks, local notables, parklands, orphanages and much more are described in fascinating detail in a refreshing alternative to the potted collections of the plethora of Liverpool history books. An expert on local sculpture, the author uses his subjects to broaden the historical background of the artefacts and the context in which they were created. As the title of this excellent book highlights, John Hussey has not dwelt on the general history of the city which has been well covered many times over elsewhere, but has concentrated on the unknown stories, the forgotten, stories that may never have seen the light of day again. This is a valuable collection woven together in a journey through a prosperous but harsh time, and both the rich and poor are covered in equal measure.

And as he quotes Marcus Garvey in the front of his work, 'A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots'. John Hussey has succeeded in adding to those roots. Highly recommended.

Mike Royden (2016)

Author John Hussey writes,

Forgotten Landscapes...Despite the proud boast of the Liverpudlians of today that there has always been a Liverpool and always will be a Liverpool, the truth is that for many centuries the world got on quite well without us, and as cities go Liverpool is only a recent newcomer compared with most others across Europe. The granting of the much-vaunted Charter of 1207 and the presence of an imposing castle were all well and good but the fact remained that the town was little more than a fishing village with a nice beach for the following 450 years. The event which awakened Liverpool from its slumbrous backwaters was the British colonisation of the West Indies which triggered a trade in slaves, an occupation which Liverpool shipowners took up with alacrity and made fortunes from throughout the following 150 years.The slave-trade was the catalyst for the building of Liverpool and it was from 1650 onwards, throughout the shameful years of the enforced African diaspora and beyond, that the architectural and cultural framework of modern Liverpool was formed; much of it has now gone and much of it is falling into decay but with a little imagination the fragments of that forgotten landscape can still be glimpsed.

Forgotten Lives...The natural corollary to envisaging Liverpool's lost landscape is to wonder what the people were like who inhabited the city; were they tougher than us? They had a whole host of diseases to cope with, harder lives and primitive living conditions; were they cleverer than us? Victorian engineering was breathtaking but it is more than remarkable that Llangollen's Pontcysllte aqueduct was begun as early as 1795; were they as cultured as us? Some of their art works have never been surpassed. The facts speak for themselves and given the obstacles they faced our ancestors were a remarkably resilient and hardy lot.Although the lives of many Liverpudlians have been documented there are far more whose stories lie mouldering in the city's archives and in this book I have tried to bring some of them back into the light of day to enlighten our lives and wonder at theirs.

John Hussey (2016)



The Publisher

Creative Dreams Publishing (UK) is a new local imprint set up by Suzanne Lau formerly of Countyvise (who in the past have published works for both Mike Royden and John Hussey). It's a new venture of great value to authors and we a pleased to give them our support.

Suzanne describes what they are about;

Creative Dreams Publishing (UK) is an imprint (and the book publishing side) of World of Creative Dreams. We mainly specialise in local interest, history and social history books. We work a bit differently to other publishers in that we are a cross between a traditional publisher and self-publisher. You could say we are a partnership publisher.

The traditional aspect is that not all books are accepted for publication. We are not a vanity publisher publishing everything under the sun regardless of quality or genre. Books that are accepted are designed,  proofread and produced to the highest and saleable quality. Books are supplied with the Creative Dreams imprint ISBN number and barcode. Authors receive royalties (rather than an advance).

The self-publishing aspect is that authors are charged a fee for book set-up, marketing and printing but will receive a discount on books should they want to purchase copies of their books to sell. (Please note, the printing fee is separate to the book setup fee as printing costs depend on quantity and final format which can only be worked out when the book is finalised.)

Most traditional publishers offer very little help when it comes to marketing, and self-publishers have to do all the marketing themselves. Here at Creative Dreams we work together with the author as a partnership and help as much as we can when it comes to marketing their books from channels of distribution to marketing materials. We want books to sell and see the author make back their money and eventually a profit.

Further details can be found on their website - Creative Dreams Publishing (UK)