'Family love is one of the most powerful elemental forces on earth, and at that moment, our last moment as a unit of three, we rode a great curling triumphant wave of it, all together.
Death may have thought that he won, but I think otherwise.' There is no right way to deal with the loss of a beloved son.
Marion and Tom are doing their dignified best, but their own relationship is taking a battering.
So when a fierce, strange woman turns up and demands to see the dead boy, Marion is almost glad of the distraction.
Against Tom's wishes, she determines to find out more about her son's life away from home.
The quest takes her out of her comfortable, conventional world to a shabby office in East London, and a series of shocks.
Tom, furious, finds his own solution, and amid scandal, sorrow and exaltation the quiet Middle-Englanders discover that there is more than one kind of family.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 272 pages
- Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
- Publication Date: 18/03/2010
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780340837436
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Review by SueinCyprus
Marion, a fifty-something woman narrates this story, which begins several months after she and her husband Tom suffered a devastating tragedy which is still affecting them in many ways. Marion has a supportive friend called Sarah, and seems to be coming to terms with her loss gradually.. when they come into contact with the miltant man-hating Djoolia. And that starts an amazing train of events that lead Marion into seeing lifestyles and living conditions she had never dreamed of, while Tom reacts in very different ways, and the two seem to be drifting apart.<br/><br/>It's hard to say more without giving anything away; suffice it to say that this is a powerful and moving book, which delves into several controversial issues, revealing different attitudes and reactions in a realistic way. Most of all, though, it shows how there can be lovable, genuine people in unexpected places. Great writing style, excellent pace, difficult to put down at times. <br/><br/>Definitely recommended to anyone who is able to be open-minded.