Calling this a tale is like trying to describe brain surgery in terms of plastocene. This was an enthralling, gripping read about one child's struggle to adapt under the tyrannical rule of her mother, and her courage in eventually managing to break free.
So enough with the preamble, and on with the plot. It was obviously written through the eyes of a young child who quietly observes the lunacies of her, at times, loving mother. Her unquestioning innocence, which gradually develops into a semi-conscious awareness of mother's fabrications, leaves for a spellbounding read. For me, the saddest parts were when the narrator expressed her terror as a child, who looks to a parent for protection and only finds abuse. This abuse either manifests itself in the form of the medical community (at times I wanted to curse those nurses and doctors for not realising, for being oblivious to a child's plea for help) or Julie's father - both are tools wielded by the mother.
I would recommend 'Sickened' to anyone still debating buying it, as I was during many tube journeys to school, to take the plunge and find out a little more about Munchausen by proxy, and the devastating effects this form of child abuse can have. Also, this should be included on the 'compulsory reading list' of any medical or social welfare establishments, simply to avoid abuse like this slipping through the fingers of the authorities time and time again.