The Village Curtain is an amalgamated collection of fictional stories and sketches, populated with imaginary characters, set in the coastal communities of Jamaica. Considerable effort was made to realistically convey conditions and methods employed village fishermen observed by the author during more than forty years of experience in the field.  The pieces gradually introduce a range of “types” which frequently populate these sea front areas. Characters drift in and out of the narrative as the story progresses, giving readers increasingly greater insights into their survival techniques and ultimately their personalities and the culture they live in.

The work exposes the daily contradictions existing between what appears to be an idyllic and picturesque life and the actual struggle that is waged.  Events have made the characters, just as in real life, suspicious of intrusion from outside, especially "official" intrusion. However well-meaning new schemes and projects may be, they must fit with local reality and an ingrained tendency of villagers to view intervention by anyone born outside their circle with suspicious caution.

This is not to suggest that this culture is inhospitable. On the contrary, genuine welcome is commonly expressed to all newcomers . . . up to a point.  Many of the ways of staying alive in these marginal districts, however, do not accord with formally sanctioned activities, so there exists an unwritten law limiting access by outsiders to more intimate village matters.

Along the way readers will meet a village elder who is woefully certain in his system of providing guidance and comment, disillusioned providers of charity, sometime drug smugglers and a man who thinks the best way to harvest the ocean is with explosives. There are lots of other interesting characters to meet, but that’s the kind of variety to expect.

A word on weather. Throughout the work, weather is a major element. It circumscribes almost everything that takes place on or near the ocean. People who try to make their living from the sea glance at the sky twenty times a day to read the signs which will guide them and ultimately determine their fate. Every farmer, hunter and fisherman is an amateur meteorologist. I hope that I have been at least partially successful at bringing the smell of the salt spray at daybreak and rage of the hurricane into the general atmosphere of this book as well as the tranquil sound of a quiet, rainy night.  I invite readers to jump into the dark humor, secret deeds and bright sunlight all competing mightily in this work for the reader's attention.

Tony Tame - Author of "The Village Curtain: A Jamaica Collection" scheduled for release in October 2009
To be available on and at quality bookstores throughout the world
Author and book website at