This novel is a fascinating read and covers a topic that does not really get discussed, domestic violence. The story comes from the perspective of a young person, Danny witnessing violence and abuse and trying desperately to get his mother out of the situation.
We follow Danny and his worry and concerns around his mothers relationship with her new partner. Initially, it seemed that Danny and his mother had an amazing new life with money and material things he could only dream of, however, things are not all that they seem.
Danny seems to recognise early on the issues arising in his mothers relationship and despite his age, is incredibly mature and researches domestic violence and desperately shows his mother and vocally raises concerns with her – this of course is ignored and he is treated like a child who knows nothing.
Danny is desperate to get support from an adult, his extended family know a lot more is going on behind close doors but keep their distance. This means Danny has to take matters into his own hands and goes in search for his mystery father for help.
I found this story just fascinating in that Danny has such maturity and tries desperately to protect his mother from harm and to try and seek a resolution (his idea may not be a great one). Malcolm’s story telling just opens your eyes to the issues surrounding domestic violence and the impact it can have on the family. I believe this book should be given to secondary school children to give them an insight into domestic violence and it should be a topic that is openly discussed and not shyed away.
Bravo Malcolm a great debut and I cannot wait to read more.
About the Book
Things I learned when I was fourteen:
Never keep secrets from your girlfriend.
Never get into a scrap with a bigger lad.
Never play football with a black ball when it’s dark.
And never let anyone hurt your mam.
About the Author
Malcolm is Geordie born and bred. This is his first novel which was inspired by his time at Comic Relief, visiting projects that support women and children who have suffered as a result of domestic abuse. Malcolm lives in Surrey with his wife and two daughters. Malcolm works as an advertising copywriter.
Me Mam. Me Dad. Me is published by Zephyr
“I wasn’t a hundred per cent sure what to make of me Mam’s new bloke. Think he wanted us to be mates, what with the money, and the hair rubbing, and the car ride and calling me General, like he really wanted me to like him.”