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Mum, Can You Lend Me Twenty Quid?: What drugs did to my family [Paperback]

Elizabeth Burton-Phillips
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
RRP: 9.99
Price: 6.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

7 Feb 2008
Elizabeth Burton Phillips is a teacher, an ordinary middle-class mother who had always tried to do the best for her children; she never imagined that her identical twin sons, who had been doing so well at school, would become involved in drugs. She was shocked when they were suspended from school for smoking cannabis; but this was just the start of a terrible, unimaginable journey - culminating in the knock on the door in the early hours by the police. They gave her the devastating news that her son Nick had killed himself in despair at his heroin addiction.Since his death, Elizabeth has campaigned tirelessly to make parents aware of the pain and suffering caused to families by drug addiction; and her surviving twin, Simon, now drug-free, has contributed his own thoughts to this inspiring and moving book.

Frequently Bought Together

Mum, Can You Lend Me Twenty Quid?: What drugs did to my family + Wasted + Once an Addict: The Fascinating True Story of One Man's Escape from the Murky Drugs Underworld
Price For All Three: 21.97

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus Books (7 Feb 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749951729
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749951726
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 13.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,561 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Elizabeth Burton-Phillips is a drugs counsellor who previously spent thirty-five years as a teacher. She kept a harrowing video diary throughout her twin sons' battles with drug addiction, and now gives talks to organizations and schools all over the UK. Elizabeth founded The Nick Mills Foundation, in her son's memory.

Product Description


It reinforces the message that I have had to learn the hard way, namely that sometimes, in order to help your loved ones, you have to sever your links with them (MRS MONEYPENNY, FT MAGAZINE)

I would urge all parents, teachers and pupils to read this heart-rending book (Anthony Seldon, Headmaster, Wellington College)

A moving, frightening story (Belfast Telegraph)

a book that is moving and ultimately, inspiring (WATERSTONES BOOKS QUARTERLY)

Book Description

A mother's searing account of every parent's nightmare - how drug addiction destroyed the lives of her twin sons

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
IN SPRING 1976 the bump appeared, and it grew and grew. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An example of true Motherhood 3 Aug 2007
I think it is hard to understand the feelings that you get once you have given birth to a baby, and you always hope that they will stay safe, happy and succesfull all of their life. In reality this is not always the case, and Elizabeth has built up the courage to lay bare her feelings of what must have been a harrowing time of her life.

Elizabeth is a great example to all mothers, and proves that love really does conquer all. No matter what, she stuck by her family and always wanted the best for them. I feel that this was also her main motivator for wanting a succesfull career, to be a good role model to her kids.

This book should be in every parents starter pack, as it is a great reminder that the drug world is on everyones doorstep, and to not to think that because you live a privileged life or have lots of money that your kids will be safe.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book that everyone should read 8 Mar 2009
This book is a real eye opener about drug abuse. Even if you have not been personally affected by drugs I would highly recommend that you read it.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
I actually watched Elizabeth Burton-Phillips and her son being interviewed about the book when it was launched, but didn't hear the complete discussion to know the full story behind what happened to one of her twins.

That meant that when I sat down to read it in one sitting today it was a shock and surprise to reach the end. It's incredibly powerful and departs from many memoirs in recording the views of everyone concerned as time went on, not just the main author.

Two copies of this book need to be sat in every single secondary school library and it should be a set book in English classes, it would do more for drugs education in school than any programme out there at the moment.

So if you have kids, particularly nearing their teenage years, read this for the perfect grace-of-god cautionary tale.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shocking and touching 9 Jan 2010
Having watched my mum battle with her sister's heroin addicition throughout my childhood but then giving up and accepting her choices, this book really helped me to understand what she has been through. Lots of books talk from the perspective of the drug user and having read from both angles it seems that the family go through so much more than the addicts themselves. This book made me cry, it was very sad and upsetting and the writer doesn't hold back any of the grim realities of heroin addition.

A compelling read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real Life 21 April 2010
What a great read. Honest and heart felt gave a real insight into what happens when drugs become an inportant part of a family showing what happens to the addict and the effect it has on close family and friends.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing book 22 Mar 2010
the title says it all. this book is easy to read and keeps the reader engrossed. its a very sad story of addiction and families, and highlighted that drug addiction can affect anybody indiscriminately. the author should be proud, i think her and her son did a very brave thing telling their story
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A harrowing story told with great bravery 7 Nov 2009
By William Cohen VINE VOICE
I'm writing a book with a recovering heroin addict, and I read this book as background. It's a sad and moving account of a mother's struggle to deal with her twin sons descent into drug addiction and crime. The story is further complicated by the dependent relationship between the twins. One can't seem to climb out of the addiction, without being dragged back in by the other. It opened my eyes to the complexity of family and adult relationships. How far should we help one another? At what point do you apply 'tough love'? Questions that the author hasn't got any definitive answers to, but which she lays out in horrifying detail.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Twenty quid 27 Oct 2009
I started to read this book one afternoon and could not put it down. It is a compelling account of what drugs - in this case heroin - can do to "ordinary" families and the hold it takes on victims.

This is a story written with great honesty and without blame. I would urge any parent to read - uncomfortable as it is to realise it could happen to any one of us.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Drug addiction
Real life information of what drugs can do to a family. Many people think it only happens to abusive, or poor homes etc this isn't so. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Sylvya Ford
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Read
Excellent book, an essential read for anyone who has a family member struggling with drug addiction. Read more
Published 16 days ago by mark buckley
5.0 out of 5 stars an eye-opener
helped me with what i am going through at the moment, so sad but yet so inspiring, a mothers unconditional love
Published 25 days ago by Susan Bedward
5.0 out of 5 stars Tragic story but there is hope.
A real story of tragedy and of hope. An amazing insure into the world of addiction and it's consequences. Read more
Published 1 month ago by K. A. Golden
3.0 out of 5 stars ok
A good but tragic story with some real insight as to the horrors of how heroin addiction affects families. Read more
Published 1 month ago by nicola wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars true story
Brilliant book. Story about hardship of a mother strugling wit realty of her sons and drugs.very true account of a sad family story.Brilliant delivery
Published 1 month ago by tanyam
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for any addict or future addict.
Elizabeth's book reminds us all how important drug education at an early age is, she brought home to me my own grandmother's pep-talk when I was at the impressionable age of 15 and... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Claire
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
A very informative book, well packaged, quickly delivered, a must for anyone with concerns about drug related issues in their family or friendship group.
Published 4 months ago by cazza47
5.0 out of 5 stars Excelllent
A must read, honest and heart breaking. Once you pick it up you won't want to put it down until you've finished it!
Published 5 months ago by barbara dixon
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional
Having seen this book performed at my Son's school I then bought the book. Such a compelling and moving true story. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Mo
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