Living with an alcoholic dad, the violence, the emotional and social deprivations and the theatrical pretence that has to be maintained that all is as it should be, are at the core of this deeply moving novel from the former editor of the Sun.
Leo is coping alone; he feels let down by his gran; school fails to see what he is dealing with and his abusive doctor dad is clever at covering his booze-soaked tracks, at making his son feel like the guilty one. As though this isn’t enough, Leo’s adored mother died of cancer and no emotional support is forthcoming to fill the void. Only one person seems to empathise and that’s a schoolgirl friend, who has been around the alcoholic parent track herself.
There’s a deal of misery and destructive behaviour here that Yelland describes from personal experience. Now he can see all this from the victim’s perspective and that makes for a touching, compelling read for sensitive readers.