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When This Thing Happened: The Story of a Father, a Son, and the Wars That Changed Them
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Michael McKernan
When This Thing Happened: The Story of a Father, a Son, and the Wars That Changed Them by Michael McKernan at Abbey's Bookshop,

When This Thing Happened: The Story of a Father, a Son, and the Wars That Changed Them

Michael McKernan


Scribe Publications

True stories of heroism, endurance & survival;
Family history, tracing ancestors


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A tour de force about the impact of war on one family over the twentieth century. As deputy director of the Australian War Memorial for many years, Michael McKernan had heard and written about many stories of war. For him, war was never about the big picture; it always came down to the individual. Yet little did he know when he met his future wife in 1989 that her father would soon be telling him, over many leisurely afternoons, his own story, of being made a slave to the Nazis in the Second World War, and its unforeseeable consequences. One of these consequences was that Mychajlo Stawyskyj's son Joe would grow up in Australia in time to be sent to fight in Vietnam, where he would become one of that war's worst casualties. Drawing on his authoritative grasp of twentieth-century history, and in particular military and social history, Michael McKernan pieces together the disrupted lives of his father-in-law and brother-in-law, creating a compelling narrative of general interest, as well as an unforgettable story about the cost of war to one Australian family.

By:   Michael McKernan
Imprint:   Scribe Publications
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 155mm,  Spine: 19mm
Weight:   342g
ISBN:   9781925106893
ISBN 10:   1925106896
Publication Date:   October 2015
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

'A poignant story of a family's luck in one war and tragedy in another. A true Australian story.' -- Barrie Cassidy, author of Private Bill 'Michael McKernan is not only an exceptional storyteller, he brings both sympathy and rigour when positioning individuals within broader, epic tales of warfare, and transforms our understanding of both.' -- Geraldine Doogue 'A must read, told with passion and honesty. At times, I struggled reading this book. It rang so close to my heart, to my own experiences, and to those of others I knew who suffered.' -- Barry Heard, author of Well Done, Those Men 'A must-read.' -- Barry Dick, Sunday Territorian '[McKernan] has an understanding of the consequences of war on individuals, their friends and their families ... [M]oving, fascinating, and full of insight.' -- Nick Goldie, Cooma-Monaro Express

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