"On June 1940, while evacuation from Dunkirk was taking place in the north, my son was born at Cauderan near Bordeaux; we were part of the exodus which was surging down the roads to the south throughout June, at times under bombs from Italian planes." So begins Gael's autobiography. Shot at by the Nazis whilst escaping with her baby son and stateless Russian husband; boarding a refugee ship sailing to South America, Gael eventually reaches the safety of New York only to return to war-ravaged Europe. She describes working with Robert Capa and David Seymour at Magnum photographers, (both were killed, in Vietnam and Suez), and with Henri Cartier-Bresson in England for Capa's brainchild, 'Generation X'. She writes of Spain in the 1950s and Paris in the 1960s; of marriages and bereavement; of a chaotic, exciting life criss-crossing Europe and the USA.
GLASGOW SUNDAY STANDARD – Few refugee stories outside the Auschwitz range have the peculiar poignancy of Gael Elton Mayo's. THE TIMES – The Mad Mosaic has about it something of the disturbing impermanence of life depicted in the film Casablanca.
SEAMUS HEANEY, OBSERVER – An exhilarating autobiography.
BookBlast ePublishing, 230pp, 20 May, 2017 | kindle & PB | Biography & Memoir, Europe, France | Mobi ISBN 978-0-9933552-3-3 Epub ISBN 978-0-9933552-5-7 Print ISBN 978-0-9933552-4-0
LIVING WITH BEELZEBUB — A true story of love and surviving cancer
Gael Elton Mayo
"When my spook draws very near, and penetrates further into the house than just the hallway, he takes on an identity. He becomes a person I can almost see; at these times he is Beelzebub." Gael almost surreal descriptions of cancer ward(s) are interspersed with memories of the people and places of her past.
TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT – Living With Beelzebub demonstrates courage, energy and humour in the face of pain and fear, and does so with a real writer's touch. It deserves to last. GREY GOWRIE, DAILY TELEGRAPH – A real contribution to the literature of illness, a brave end to her vivacious autobiography The Mad Mosaic. OBSERVER – The writer Gael Elton Mayo has had almost too interesting a life. She is a survivor who plays to win.
Gael writes about two homes she loved and lost in two very different regions of France — the Franche-Comté and Provence — in this travel-memoir.
PATRICK LEIGH FERMOR – A marvellous, subtle knack of catching atmosphere and landscape, an ear for the spoken word that evokes half Balzac, half Alain Fournier … I loved it. SPECTATOR – Gael Elton Mayo has a visual quality of writing and is a perceptive sociologist … This satire of modern mores ends up like a Proustian meditation on Time. Perhaps The End of a Dream should also be read as a Temps Retrouvé. ELIZABETH LONGFORD, BOOKS – Gael Elton Mayo speaks of two unique regions of France with her magical voice that first enchanted me in The Mad Mosaic … The fierce independence of the Jura, the moody mountain in Provence, the vivid pictures of people, animals, wine, food, flowers — even the mistral — made me feel nostalgic about places I had never seen.
BookBlast ePublishing, 144pp, 27 Nov, 2017 | kindle & PB | Biography & Memoir, Travel, Europe, France | Mobi ISBN 978-0-9933552-9-5 Epub ISBN 978-0-9930927-6-3 Print ISBN 978-0-9930927-5-6
A MAN IN A PANTHER SKIN — The life of Prince Dimitri Djordjadze
Gael Elton Mayo
Prince Dimitri Djordjadze: a Georgian prince of anachronistically aristocratic ethos, a born fighter who had to flee the Bolsheviks, a penniless emigre who made and lost several fortunes, a Don Juan who idealised women, a superb equestrian and top bloodstock breeder who became a racing driver. He went everywhere and knew everyone in the haut monde. An arresting portrait of a striking man and a vanished world.