South African Country Life - - Books -

“I was made in Cof­fee Bay. Right there on the beach, in the sand.” So be­gins the story of a child­hood marked by more than a fair share of tragedy and harsh­ness. Adopted into a mid­dle­class fam­ily soon af­ter birth, Suzan Hack­ney de­scribes her for­ma­tive years with an adop­tive mother who, car­ry­ing her own set of demons, takes an in­stant dis­like to her. A dis­like that never wanes and that finds ex­pres­sion in the au­thor’s poignant phrase, ‘Ev­ery Sin­gle Thing I Do Is Wrong’. No won­der Suzan, des­per­ate for her mother’s favour but never re­ceiv­ing it, rebels at an early age. Reach­ing her teens, she’s ad­mit­ted to un­for­giv­ing re­for­ma­to­ries and so-called ‘Places of Safety’ where, by all ac­counts, con­di­tions and at­ti­tudes do lit­tle to help trou­bled chil­dren. Yet, Suzan’s ir­re­press­ible na­ture and her com­pas­sion for fel­low ‘in­mates’ help her deal with the de­pri­va­tions. It’s a grip­ping, frank, bril­liantly writ­ten ac­count that stays with you long af­ter you’ve fin­ished read­ing it.

Au­thor: Suzan Hack­ney Re­viewer: An­drea Ab­bott

Pub­lisher: Jonathan Ball ISBN: 978-1-86842-872-4

Price: R250 Give­away Code: TSK

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