This is the story of Lucy, a young girl about to embark on high school and currently spending school break with her friends. Unfortunately Lucy is unable to enjoy herself as she is too preoccupied with things at home.
To anyone else Lucy appears to be living the good life, her Dad has a well paid job and as a result both her and her mum can have whatever they please, living in a stunning house in a respectable area. What Lucy wants though is to feel safe and protected at home with her family, free from the atmosphere and control her Dad provides whenever he has a bad day or has been drinking.
Lucy confides some of her Dads behaviour towards her mum to her friend Megan who gives Lucy the much needed support she requires, and in time encourages Lucy to face up to her Dad and put an end to the constant atmosphere and anticipation he creates.
Seeking refuge in a secret attic crawl space after confrontations with her Dad, Lucy stores her artwork up there and the space sort of doubles up as an art gallery for Lucy’s sketches she has completed. Lucy hides her artistic efforts from her Dad because he is instantly dismissive.
There are other welcome distractions going on throughout this story, with the usual disagreements between friends to resolve and a curious neighbour, the reclusive sort that everyone talks about and nobody knows. Lucy hears that the Lady next door could be an artist and she is eager to find out because that is what Lucy aspires to be one day however much her Dad frowns on the idea.
There is a recurring theme within this book of suffering in silence and being afraid to face your demons but Lucy is different to others because she has a determined mindset that is intent on protecting her Mum and with that in mind she pursues a way to hopefully get her Dad to back off.
This book makes for very emotional reading throughout as it resonates with its readers. The content is massively applicable to the YA title audiences and reinforces the importance of confiding in someone you trust if you find yourself in similar circumstances to those in this book. Main character Lucy is highly memorable not just for her antics in the attic but for her ability to see that something needed to change within her family and home and having the courage to see bringing that change about.
Published by – Simon & Schuster Publication date – 02.05.19 RRP – £6.99 (PB)