It cannot be doubted that Jim Perrin, the author of the questionable book West and a man whom we had come to know when he was involved with our sister, Jac, caused the deletion of our review(s) on Amazon. He could not have tolerated the truth of what we had written — and when the information we post on our site is read, it can be seen why he should have been so concerned!
We first set up jacssisters on 07/09/2010, as a direct result of reading the other reviews on Amazon, some, we were certain, written by Jim Perrin using aliases — and now removed — as well as reviews and comments in The Guardian by ‘Melangell’ (another Jim Perrin alias, and still to be read there). Since then, as a result of so much help and additional support our site has become lengthier than we anticipated, and with (we have been told!) an impressive amount of information. Such an irony, when this outcome is one Jim Perrin could neither have wished for nor foreseen…
* * * * *
The following is one of our deleted reviews; although, despite its length it did remain for quite some time until it was later ‘purged’: it must be clear to all, that Jim Perrin complained…
‘We note that “West: a journey through the landscapes of loss” is available in paperback. As our sister was the person of whom the author has written at length, we wish to show that the book is, in great part, based on the misrepresentation of his short relationship with her, and we have found it to be extraordinarily self-indulgent. This book has been claimed by Jim Perrin — in his articles and in his interviews — to be ‘autobiographical’, although in his entry-note for the ‘Wales Book of the Year’ he categorised it as ‘Other’: it was not longlisted for this prestigious award. May we make it quite clear that our sister Jac, was not Jim Perrin’s ‘lover, wife and friend of forty years’. What he has written here is not only flagrant fabrication but it is also an excellent example of his modus operandi. As The Wanderer wrote on this site, 21/11/2010, ”Facts are distorted, time periods are shifted to deceive and disorientate the reader… ” At best, what Jim Perrin has written is a fantasised account, at worst he has in places lied outright (of which we have evidence). Neither does he, we believe — as he writes in West and in articles and various interviews — have terminal lung cancer; and the ‘Welsh blood’ which in his book he so assiduously claims came — according to his (researched) family tree — only from his maternal great grandmother, not his grandmother. The other maternal antecedents are, as are every one of those on his paternal line (and quite contrary to what he tells his readers), not Welsh but ENGLISH… So, the book West is not what Jim Perrin says it is.
Also, very large sections have already been published elsewhere: the article Touching the Void in the Observer in August 2005 (and we believe the use of this title to be plagiarised), The Guardian Country Diary, 25/08/2007, (most of it word for word); nearly all of Advertisements for my feet in Open Democracy, 05/12/2001 — in which he goes into his ‘Welshness’ with great detail — and, from the Climbing Essays, the entire first chapter. Most interesting then that ‘Melangel’ (JP?) wrote on The Guardian thread, 27/07/2010, ‘You can’t get away with lazy reading where Perrin’s prose is concerned’. We believe Jim Perrin’s book to be merely a ‘lazy’ composite and notwithstanding the memorable descriptive phrases, (or the analyses by literary experts), in our opinion it is based on sophistry and in many parts, as we have proved, actual dishonesty. Jim Perrin’s writing is not, we feel, ‘extraordinarily dense’, nor do we find it of ‘considerable complexity’ — as does, unsurprisingly, ‘Melangell’, ref. our post ‘A question of identity’, but is in our opinion, mere verbal dexterity, with an extraordinary amount of self-plagiarism. (And do note the wild life ‘extras’, always on cue.)
We cannot fail to acknowledge the tragedy of the death of Jim Perrin’s son by suicide and probably this will be the major crisis in the author’s life, but his account of our sister’s death is a complete lie, as are so many of the things he has written about her. He was not with our sister when she died — yet he describes it so ‘vividly’. All this is food for thought and no, we cannot recommend West.’