The (Almost) True Story of a Man Called Jack

Author(s): Vivienne Lingard

NZ Biography

The (almost) true story of a man called Jack, is a fictionalised memoir about my father, John Frederick Lingard Fowlds. He was such a character, I decided to make him one in his own story. Altering names and events, was freeing, enabling me write my family as ‘other’. I loved that. The story recounts Jack McPhee’s life through the 1950s and 60s with his family in Silverstream, in the Hutt Valley north of Wellington. The McPhees live in a dilapidated old villa, which would be in today’s terms be known as ‘the worst house in the best street’. Thigh-high weeds are the garden, crazed concrete is the front yard. The four children share the one bedroom and the parents sleep in the lounge. But Jack has a plan to renovate. Jack always has a plan. He tries his hand at sign-writing, singing, acting and art. He is funny, playful, and just loves life. But he is also hard-working; running bookstalls, bookshops and a travelling library during his short life. The (almost) true story of a man called Jack, will likely make you laugh, and cry, but it is certainly going to wish that you had known the man called Jack.


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Product Information

Vivienne Lingard comes from Silverstream in the Hutt Valley and now lives in Devonport, Auckland. She has a background in art, which includes exhibiting, teaching and children’s book illustration. Vivienne has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Auckland, and has completed courses in advanced fiction writing at Massey University. She completed a mentorship programme through the New Zealand Society of Authors and a short story masterclass with Tome Jenks in San Francisco. Vivienne is currently working on a new novel as well as continuing with her art practice.

General Fields

  • : 9780473533984
  • : Artistry Publishing
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 160mm x 220mm
  • : Vivienne Lingard
  • : 251