The Mango Orchard, By Robin Bayley

A family tale of wanderlust, rebels and...cotton
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The Independent Culture

As a child, Robin Bayley would listen, enthralled, to tales of his great-grandfather, who travelled to Mexico in 1898 to take charge of a cotton mill.

According to family legend, Arthur Greenhalgh built a fortune and tangled with rebels and bandits, before returning to England in the wake of the revolution of 1910. Convinced that there was more to the story, Bayley resolved to retrace his ancestor's footsteps across Latin America in search of the truth. The Mango Orchard is the result, and it is a pure pleasure. Part travelogue, part touching family history, it artfully weaves the account of Bayley's journey with Arthur's, and the narrative builds to a revelation that will leave only the most obdurate reader unmoved.