Ah, to be an embryo again. Christopher Vanier’s story begins where we all do, conception. Set in 1940s and 1950s on the Caribbean island of St Kitts and beset by a troubled colonial legacy, both Christopher and his island yearn for independence. Vanier recalls the mischief of an island childhood: giving his baby brother to an ungrateful monkey, sneaking out to the cinema after school hours, hair-raising jaunts on a volcano, disastrous experiments involving a rocket… Is this boy lost in the plain sailing of childhood or can he turn his curiosity into Caribbean Chemistry? This is a story of self-discovery, told candidly in language rich enough to eat: Breadfruit, breadnut, bamboo, lignum vitae, marouba, weedee, and calabash. Funny and engaging, a story about breaking the barriers of identity and finding them again. A rare view of the emigrant’s tale.