Friday, 20 December 2013

Sex, Lies and Family Ties by Sarah J Graham

It's the 1970s. Nineteen year-old Carol is busy being a rebel, staying out late, riding a motorbike, arguing with her parents, fighting with her siblings. Just like many other teenage tearaways, you might think. But then Carol's brother Jim dies and her world falls apart - not because she's upset, but because she's finally rid of him, and yet even in death, he rules her life. Her refusal to mourn or behave appropriately causes bigger family rifts, so she takes solace with her friends who have their own problems. And sometimes other peoples' problems are so much easier to solve than your own.

This is more than a coming-of-age story. It's a memoir of growing up, about the need to fit into a society that constantly expects you to be something you're not. It's about friendships and loyalties, how blood is not always thicker than water and people are not always what they seem on the surface.

A poignant look back at the 20th century for those of us of a certain age and a reminder that sometimes the only way to survive is to be true to yourself. 


Sex, Lies and Family Ties reviewed by Debbie Bennett