Book Review; Escaping Daddy by Maria Landon
I have read a few Martina Coles novels, and recently (as you will see in a review) other books on East End’s notorious crime world, but to read it in a bio was particularly disturbing, especially when the main plot surrounds a young girl abused by a drunk father, and then forced into tricks on the street by him as well when just thirteen…and this being known by ll and sundry, including the constabulary.
The blurb on the back cover sets the scene….
This story is hard to put down, yet very hard to hold on to as you follow this young girl’s plight coming from a family many of us could never dream existed, and then her brave battle to escape the life on the streets, and ultimately the fight to stop loving her dad altogether. Yep, you heard right, despite everything he did, Maria loved her dad, and this book (seemingly the second she wrote) tells of the battle she endured to sever permanently the love and respect she had for him.
We often hear of ‘vicious cycles’ within these dysfunctional family groups and this book is confirmation of the issues society faces in breaking them, starting with a blind eye from social services and the Police, through to friends and acquaintances who don’t step up, but only make it worst. Maria herself seemed to drift from one shitty relationship to another, in the process producing a couple of kids herself, however it is a tribute to her that she did sort of break away from history to put her kids above everything else…
I won’t give to much away on this one, it should be read to believe it, and in fact you should read her first book first (which I will soon) “Daddy’s Little Earner” which in the title alone sends a chill through you. From a negative point of view the book is poorly written, or narrated at times which becomes a distraction as my mounting frustration at her constant reminding us of her past (OK! We get it, it is not something we will forget) as well as touching on her self-blame and blame aimed at others. Yes, she has a right to do so, but it felt like every bloody paragraph ended with “if only my mum hadn’t walked out”, or “if only dad hadn’t abused me”, or “if only I had been stronger”…yes, while we are traumatised as much as you, your obvious attempts at fishing for sympathy are annoying…
Good book, but not in a good way.