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A Swift Pure Cry

"Thoughtful evocation of life when families fall apart as the main character is on the cusp of adulthood"

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LoveReading4Kids Says

LoveReading4Kids Says

Winner of the Branford Boase Award 2007.

A superb first novel, beautifully written, deeply moving and full of heartbreak. When Shell Talent’s mother dies everything around her begins to fall to pieces. Tired of looking after her younger brother and sister and bored by the routines of school and church, Shell skips school and hangs around with her friends smoking and cracking jokes and looking for chances that will confirm their growing up. But what follows is not a simple transition into adulthood but the tragedy of Shell’s hidden pregnancy and the stillbirth of her baby. Siobhan Dowd writes without judgement but with enormous sympathy and understanding capturing Shell’s confusion and the hypercritical and chaotic thinking of the small Irish community in which she is growing up.


Julia Eccleshare M.B.E

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