Read by Richard Mitchley & Jake Urry (Unabridged: 1hr 57mins)
Stacy Aumonier was born at Hampstead Road near Regent’s Park, London on 31st March 1877.
He came from a family with a strong and sustained tradition in the visual arts; sculptors and painters.
On leaving school it seemed the family tradition would also be his career path. In particular his early talents were that of a landscape painter. He exhibited paintings at the Royal Academy in the early years of the twentieth century.
In 1907 he married the international concert pianist, Gertrude Peppercorn, at West Horsley in Surrey. A year later Aumonier began a career in a second branch of the arts at which he enjoyed a short but outstanding success—as a stage performer writing and performing his own sketches.
The Observer newspaper commented that "...the stage lost in him a real and rare genius, he could walk out alone before any audience, from the simplest to the most sophisticated, and make it laugh or cry at will."
In 1915, Aumonier published a short story ‘The Friends’ which was well received (and was subsequently voted one of the 15 best stories of 1915 by the Boston Magazine, Transcript).
Despite his age in 1917 at age 40 he was called up for service in World War I. He began as a private in the Army Pay Corps, and then transferred as a draughtsman in the Ministry of National Service.
By now he had four books published—two novels and two books of short stories—and his occupation is recorded with the Army Medical Board as ‘author.’<p>In the mid-1920s, Aumonier received the shattering diagnosis that he had contracted tuberculosis. In the last few years of his life, he would spend long spells in various sanatoria, some better than others.<p>Shortly before his death, Stacy Aumonier sought treatment in Switzerland, but died of the disease in Clinique La Prairie at Clarens beside Lake Geneva on 21st December 1928. He was 55.