Genre: Contemporary Fiction
“An alcoholic father, her mother missing since she was a child, all Sammy has are her friends. When their deceit starts to tear into their group Sammy must decide whether doing the right thing is worth losing everything.
Friendships can be fleeting, family can’t be chosen and the choices she makes will stay with her until the day she dies."
Here’s the only author description I could find, and I like it:
“I'm J. Cassidy and I used to be an oak tree growing in a park in England. I still like to be decorated once a year.
I like pink, sparkly fluffles and rainbows.”
This novel is chock-full of F-bombs and sex with a constant undercurrent of violence, and I loved every word.
On the pages without a sex act or a reference to one, you’ll find a twenty-year-old girl--Sammy--who is thinking or talking or being asked about sex. Yet this is in no way an erotic novel. Sammy uses sex. Sometimes as a weapon, but more often as a shield to insulate her from the internal damage of an abusive childhood, suffered at the hands of her alcoholic father who raised her alone after her mother walked out on a four-year-old Sammy.
Most of the swearing from Sammy is colloquial, intended not to insult, but to reinforce the tough shell she has built around herself. Only her close friends are ever allowed to peek inside Sammy’s emotional bubble, and even then, it is only a peek.
Sammy is a broken person. She doesn’t smile, she turns up the edges of her mouth. This story is a snapshot taken over a short period of her life. It’s sad, poignant, and wholly believable.
The writing is sharp, and fits the mood of the piece. There is a lot of colloquial spelling in the dialogue, but it works well, without getting tiring. The novel is set in England, in a blue-collar environment, but I believe American readers can soon catch the conversational rhythm.
If you have no problem with sex and swearing and unvarnished real-life drama and you are yearning for something “different” to read. You should check out this unique story.
Heavy on F-bombs, graphic sex. English spelling and situations.
Our review copy had some formatting issues.
Rating: ***** Five Stars
Reviewed by: Pete Barber
Approximate word count: 25-30,000 words