Baby is twelve. Her mother died soon after she was born so she lives with her father - and his heroin addiction. She's grown up in Montreal' red-light district, never staying anywhere long enough to call it home, and now Baby is losing the only constant in her life; her father. He's been sent to hospital and she's been forced into foster care. She ...
Baby is twelve. Her mother died soon after she was born so she lives with her father - and his heroin addiction. She's grown up in Montreal' red-light district, never staying anywhere long enough to call it home, and now Baby is losing the only constant in her life; her father. He's been sent to hospital and she's been forced into foster care. She longs for his return; other people's families are no substitute for her own. Starved of affection, Baby is attracted to all the wrong people. And when her father betrays her and she is sent to a juvenile detention centre, she is more at risk than ever. Baby' survival rests on her gift for spinning stories and for cherishing the small crumbs of happiness which fall into her lap. Poised on the threshold between childhood and adult life, she is bright, funny, observant and ultimately wise enough to realize that salvation rests in her hands alone.Heather O'Neill' talent is outstanding, she is able to craft the most beautiful images and "Quercus" anticipates a remarkable future for her.
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While reading this book I found myself hoping and even praying for the young girl being raised by a single parent drug-addicted father. Every once in a while I would tell myself, this could never be true. And then I read the biography of the author. This author knows whereof she speaks. I found this book impossible to set down, so if you have unbridled reading habits, make sure you have the time to finish without disrupting your life. This is a Canadian book and persons in Montreal will probably recognize street names. This is a book with wonderfully drawn pictures of dysfunctional families that still succeed in loving both their own children and those of their neighbours. This is a book to remind us that people who carry heavy burdens of guilt and sorrow, need our understanding and help, not our censure and trite advice. It is not always possible to pull up one's own socks.
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