Lynda grew up in Leigh, Lancashire and moved to London at the age of 18 to study drama and education. She was part of Broadside Workers Mobile Theatre in the 80' and directed Young People's Theatre at Jacksons Lane Community Centre. She taught Drama in schools, in Pupil Referral Units and community centres.
In Looked after Boy, Lynda tells the story of a much neglected group of young people, those in the care system. She describes the intense connection Joe, the protagonist, feels for Tottenham. Lynda is the Artistic Director of Tottenham Theatre, a community theatre that serves the diverse communities of Tottenham. Lynda has devised and directed numerous plays based on lived experience . Most recently, she has worked with young refugees stuck in Calais.
Lynda set up Acting OUT, a therapeutic project which uses drama to help traumatised young people. She is a freelance trainer in Social and Emotional Learning and has developed training courses for foster carers. Lynda and her husband were foster carers. Looked After Boy is her first novel and although it grew out of her experience as foster carer and teacher the novel itself is entirely a work of fiction.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
This book is brilliant, but absolutely tragic. The author has worked as a teacher and is a foster carer, suggesting that while this is a work of fiction, it is surely influenced by her experiences and this just makes it more harrowing. I work in education and so have had training on county lines but reading this story makes it far more real, because we see everything from Joe's point of view.
The story follows a family and the abuse that the children and mother experience at the hands of the father. I don't want to say much more because I think this book was even more powerful for encountering events as Joe experienced them, but I will say that I hope Pete's character is based on someone real. Every child, particularly those in foster care, deserve someone like him in their corner.
Will you recommend that your students read or purchase this title? Yes
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