Saving Daisy by Phil Earle
|Saving Daisy by Phil Earle
|Reviewer: Robert James
|Summary: Unflinchingly realistic in its depiction of some tough scenarios, this contemporary drama is a high recommendation due to some powerful writing and excellent characters. I look forward to seeing more of Earle's work.
|Date: January 2012
|External links: Author's website
Longlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2013
Ever since finding a report which said she was responsible for the death of her mother, Daisy has felt unable to cope. Her dad, despite the good relationship they have, refuses to talk about her mum's passing, so she takes refuge firstly in her beloved films, but then in self-harm. As her life spirals more and more out of control, can Daisy be saved?
I've intentionally left the plot details here really sparse as there's an early plot occurence which absolutely blew me away and I think it's probably best if you're reading this without too much knowledge of what's going to happen. Because of that, I'm left unable to go into as many details as I normally would about characters for fear of giving parts of the plot away. What I will say about them is that Daisy is an excellent narrator, being really sympathetic and well-drawn, while the supporting cast is strong as well. The dialogue is particularly good - each character seems to have a really strong voice, Earle's writing style is uncompromising - while never too horrendously graphic, he deals with some brutal issues and this is a really intense read as a result. It's uncomfortable stuff at times, partly because of how realistic Earle's characters and scenarios are, but it's never less than completely gripping.
I should mention that this is a 'companion book' to Earle's debut, Being Billy - however I hadn't read that one (in which Daisy apparently also features) and don't feel this detracted from my enjoyment of this one at all. Highly recommended, and I'll certainly be tracking down Being Billy and keeping an eager eye out for more by this author. We do have a review of SuperDad's Day Off by Phil Earle.
For another incredibly powerful teen read dealing with difficult issues, I thought This Is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees was excellent.
You can read more book reviews or buy Saving Daisy by Phil Earle at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Saving Daisy by Phil Earle at Amazon.com.
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