Troubador Broken Lives

Released: 28/01/2020

ISBN: 9781838591953

eISBN: 9781838599287

Format: Paperback/eBook

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Broken Lives


Just like any other mother, Samantha adores her two little girls who are everything that matters to her in the world. Her own childhood was unhappy with an abusive, neglectful and inadequate mother... Tormented by her childhood memories she struggles to function as an adult and finds comfort in alcohol until it begins to destroy her life. April Gardiner is the social worker who strives to help Samantha to hold on to her children whilst her priority is to keep them safe.

At the same time as dealing with the trauma and sufferings of the families she works with and making life changing decisions for children, April is trying to deal with her own personal issues which are impacting on her life.

Both women had a similar start in life, but their personal childhood experiences determined the adults they ultimately became.

The story raises issues around disadvantage and describes how the state and government ideology perpetuates underprivilege and inequality, making it almost impossible for those caught up in the cycle to avoid a steep spiral downwards.

Whilst the story provides an insight into children and families social work and the dilemmas and life changing decisions that are part and parcel of their everyday work, the main theme of the story is how the luck of who you are born to, will determine who you later become, and the steep uphill struggle faced by the unfortunate children who are born in underprivileged circumstances and deprivation.

Although there is sadness, there are also happy outcomes for some and a spattering of humour throughout. My aim was to raise laughter as well as tears.

This story was bleak with bits of light shining through. Pretty true to a social worker’s experiences. I wish the ending had been resolved, but that is often the way these tales go. Well done.

by Lana

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Thank you NetGalley.

Samantha is a mom to two little girls who she absolutely adores. Samantha lacks the coping skills she needs, so she depends on alcohol to assist her.... which leads to social worker April Gardiner getting involved into her life. They form an unlikely bond due to their pasts/childhood experiences.

by Kade

Broken Lives was such a heartbreaking read that I had to stop reading for a few days. It was full of emotion and convincinly shows the true life of a social worker, which can be a very dark place. There was no beating about the bush with this, it was straight to the core but it did have some lighter moments. There were plenty of twists and turns to keep you intrigued. This was a very well written book.

by Jolene

Teresa Devereux

Teresa was brought up in a mining village and was the fourth of six children. She loved school and had great fun, but didn't take life seriously or start studying until she was in her thirties and had two children. She has been married for 32 years and has three lovely grandchildren. Apart from writing and being with the grandchildren Teresa likes to spend her spare time playing tennis, gardening or socialising with friends.

Teresa has a degree in Psychology and Social Policy and qualified as a social worker in 2001. After eight years of working in a children and families team, she started working with disabled children, before becoming a manager. She now works part time as an Independent Reviewing Officer, chairing reviews for children who are in foster care. Her role is to ensure that the local authority is providing adequate care for the children and all their needs are being met. Teresa's political stance is towards social justice and equality of opportunities and she strongly believes that every child deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential.

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