At a time where Sweden, and probably a lot of Europe, sees a lot of Romany immigrants, it was a bit of a coincidence that the book Gypsy Boy by Mikey Walsh was on an 83% for my Kindle. Mikey Walsh seems to know a fair few of the people I follow on Twitter, and I have thus seen some people promoting his book. Not being able to resist a good deal on a book, I, naturally, bought it (despite having waaaaaay too many books on my ”To Read”-list.)
Now that I am old and haggard, I have more or less stopped staying up all night ”just ’coz I have to finish a book”, but with Gypsy Boy, I simply had to. I finished the book in less than 4 hours, and afterwards went to sleep with a terrible feeling in my stomach.
Mikey Walsh grew up in a Romany community, with a family full of competitive fighters. He realised quite early that this life was not for him, something that made his father start beating him at a very early age, and, when Mikey understood that he was gay, he finally realised that he had to escape from the community he grew up in.
It is a very harrowing read, showing how much harm it can do to force people to live up to expectations that aren’t their own. I am amazed that Mikey Walsh has still managed to not hate his father and the culture he grew up in after all that happened to him. It was a long time since I was this touched by a book!
I am very much looking forward to finishing my ”To Read”-list, so I can justify buying the sequel, Gypsy Boy On The Run.
To buy Gypsy Boy on Amazon UK, click here.
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