The Vernham Chronicles

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
THE VERNHAM CHRONICLES
- A SYNOPSIS -

‘The Vernham Chronicles’, John Saunders’ first book, is a charming light comedy with a schoolboy sense of humor that is perhaps a little dark around the edges at times, it features twelve chapters, ten of which detail a day or event in the life throughout a year of a little fantasy village called Vernham. Two chapters are dedicated to complete and utter nonsense, one recounting characters and events of Vernham past (Of Idiosyncrasies, Ideas and Idiots), the other details the farcical happenings in the Vernham native’s lives (Vernham Gossip Update).

‘The Vernham Chronicles’ confuses fact with fiction, merging historical events with complete fabrication. It is written as a narrative in the present tense, with the odd recycled joke, in a children’s story style which is often sarcastic, and the occasional digression and flashback to previous events that explain the reasons behind the current situation.

The little village of Vernham, buried deep in the Vernbury Vale, is a hive of activity with its natives going about their everyday business in sometimes less than conventional ways. Almost frozen in time, where its populace struggle to come to terms with the modern day, Vernham village refuses to recognise the £1 coin, only £1 notes are accepted in its shops. For visitors to Vernham, or ‘Spruggles’ as the Vernhamites call them, the £1 notes are printed in the city of Busted at the back of a Bureau de Change, where the exchange rate is £1.20p for a £1 note, and when the need to change notes back to coins arises you’ll only get 80p in return for your £1 note. The characters are all a bit odd, there is the local Bobby PC Fred Sweetman who has a strange habit which is revealed in chapter two, a Fire Chief that is irresponsible with matches, Mrs Bunkerton who’s been recently widowed seven years ago as she tells everybody every day, she also suffers from a strange obsessive compulsive disorder and irritable bowel syndrome, but we won’t mention too much about the latter. A very alcoholic Reverend Parsworthy, always collecting for the Church door fund, and spending the proceeds in the local pub ’The Grummet and Nut’, the door is never bought. And the star ‘Mr Robson the counterfeit Scotsman’, seemingly ubiquitous and irritating, convinced of his Scottish ancestry and past lives after he had a dream about Rabbie Burns, which he wrongly refers to as his ‘post monition‘, a warning after the event. Mr Robson of course has always been a Vernhamite, as were all of his ancestors, he’s quite mad. The final chapter sees Mr Robson realizing his Celtic dream at a Christmas party, in a sad but very sweet way.

There is also a mythical monster ‘The Vernham Bog Stomper’ that is said to manifest itself on Sweetwater Marsh.

This collection of stories have been written with possible television, film or radio adaptation in mind.


Any similarity in names of fictional characters and places mentioned in ‘The Vernham Chronicles’ to real people and places is purely coincidental, and rather bad luck really!

Table of Contents

The Vernham Chronicles

Submitted: February 23, 2014


THE VERNHAM CHRONICLES
- A SYNOPSIS -

‘The Vernham Chronicles’, John Saunders’ first book, is a charming light comedy with a schoolboy sense of humor that is perhaps a little dark around the edges at times, it features twelve chapters, ten of which detail a day or event in the life throughout a year of a little fantasy village called Vernham. Two chapters are dedicated to complete and utter nonsense, one recounting characters and events of Vernham past (Of Idiosyncrasies, Ideas and Idiots), the other details the farcical happenings in the Vernham native’s lives (Vernham Gossip Update).

‘The Vernham Chronicles’ confuses fact with fiction, merging historical events with complete fabrication. It is written as a narrative in the present tense, with the odd recycled joke, in a children’s story style which is often sarcastic, and the occasional digression and flashback to previous events that explain the reasons behind the current situation.

The little village of Vernham, buried deep in the Vernbury Vale, is a hive of activity with its natives going about their everyday business in sometimes less than conventional ways. Almost frozen in time, where its populace struggle to come to terms with the modern day, Vernham village refuses to recognise the £1 coin, only £1 notes are accepted in its shops. For visitors to Vernham, or ‘Spruggles’ as the Vernhamites call them, the £1 notes are printed in the city of Busted at the back of a Bureau de Change, where the exchange rate is £1.20p for a £1 note, and when the need to change notes back to coins arises you’ll only get 80p in return for your £1 note. The characters are all a bit odd, there is the local Bobby PC Fred Sweetman who has a strange habit which is revealed in chapter two, a Fire Chief that is irresponsible with matches, Mrs Bunkerton who’s been recently widowed seven years ago as she tells everybody every day, she also suffers from a strange obsessive compulsive disorder and irritable bowel syndrome, but we won’t mention too much about the latter. A very alcoholic Reverend Parsworthy, always collecting for the Church door fund, and spending the proceeds in the local pub ’The Grummet and Nut’, the door is never bought. And the star ‘Mr Robson the counterfeit Scotsman’, seemingly ubiquitous and irritating, convinced of his Scottish ancestry and past lives after he had a dream about Rabbie Burns, which he wrongly refers to as his ‘post monition‘, a warning after the event. Mr Robson of course has always been a Vernhamite, as were all of his ancestors, he’s quite mad. The final chapter sees Mr Robson realizing his Celtic dream at a Christmas party, in a sad but very sweet way.

There is also a mythical monster ‘The Vernham Bog Stomper’ that is said to manifest itself on Sweetwater Marsh.

This collection of stories have been written with possible television, film or radio adaptation in mind.


Any similarity in names of fictional characters and places mentioned in ‘The Vernham Chronicles’ to real people and places is purely coincidental, and rather bad luck really! Read Chapter