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The diary of a single parent abroad

The diary of a single parent abroad [Kindle Edition]

Jill Pennington
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

When Jill and her family moved to Italy she expected life to change but she had no idea how massive that change would be. Shortly after the move, she discovered her husband had been having an affair and had no intentions of staying in Italy.

Despite being in a foreign country with no income, limited language skills, a house that needed rebuilding and three young children to care for, she never once considered returning to the UK. With strength and determination she accepted any challenge, dismantling a derelict house to ground level, digging out a three metre deep well with her hands to get free water and overcoming her fear of the chainsaw to cut the winter wood. When there was very little money for food she made risotto with nettles collected from the roadside. She overcame many problems, learned new skills and discovered that money is not important, the only things in life that matter are health, happiness and her children.

Jill's story is delivered with an ever present hint of humour because, as she says, 'Without laughter life wouldn't be funny'.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 316 KB
  • Print Length: 242 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S. r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00871I0XS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #29,230 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Jill Pennington was born in West Yorkshire. She now lives in Italy on a small farm in the Apennine mountains with her three children.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Gutsy Account of a New Life Abroad 8 Aug 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As the writer states, this is not your usual ex-pat story. And I'm glad about that as the genre - of wealthy expat doing up a house in Italy/France and complaining about the builders has become somewhat of a cliché.

This is an honest, frank, gutsy account of carving out a new life by a courageous woman who has made a new life for herself and her family - against the odds.

There is humour and heartbreak in equal measure - from the menagerie of animals (some of which are kept as pets rather than as food) to the brave baring of the writer's soul.

Usually when I find copy editing and proofing errors in the early chapters of a book in the 'Look Inside' section, I choose to spend my money elsewhere. But, to be fair to the writer, I was reading a free copy of this book, which I'd downloaded during an early promotion and figured that as I didn't have to pay for it, I should just kept reading and for once, put the writing aside. And I'm glad I did as I found the wit, charm and honesty very engaging.

The one big advantage of publishing an ebook is that it is so easy upload an edited version of your book. Once this has been done and the prose given a final polish, The Diary of a Single Parent Abroad could do very well.
The ending is rather abrupt but that may be because a sequel is planned. I hope so.

There is no doubt that this will appeal to readers dreaming of a new life abroad - but who haven't mustered up the courage to take the plunge.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the diary of a single parent abroad 16 May 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
Having read this autobiographical book i found firstly i could not put it down and wanted, no NEEDED to keep reading on for the next twist and turn, into someones life from a fly on the wall perspective , told with humour but also realism it was an additive read (coming from an infrequent reader) i guess it just shows the reality of peoples lives we never get to see
Cant wait for more!! BRAVISSIMO!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing woman 6 May 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I love books about Brits settling abroad and have read loads but this has to be my new favourite. Jill has a natural writing style, she draws you into her world in an entertaining way. To move to a new country with three children and be practically abandoned there by her husband must have been at times soul destroying but there is no hint of self pity in this book. As for her xhubby I am so pleased Jill has been able to show him to the world for the irresponsible father he is. I was horrified that he thought it ok to put his children on separate flights to the uk and am even more horrified that he thinks it is ok to not pay maintenance for his daughter, a real man puts his differences with his ex wife aside from his responsibilities as a father. I would love to read more about Jill's life in Italy,time she got a new boyfriend to tell us about!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a diary it is 27 Sep 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The word "diary" in the title is appropriate - it is very much a first person account of the author's life over the past eight years. I found it interesting to read about the ups and downs of ordinary life following moving to another country. But I became increasingly uncomfortable reading about the blame and antagonism between the author and her ex-husband. It reminded me of listening to friends following split-ups who character assassinate their ex and I even began to wonder what his side of the story was - sorry, Jill! Her upbeat can-do attitude is commendable and I wish the author well with writing and earning from it and I am glad to support her with my purchase.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By rhosymynydd VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What a terrific book! I could stop there as that is basically all there is to say. However, in respect of the author's efforts, I must elucidate. Living an ex-pat life is never easy; (speaking from personal experience of moving for my own work, and settling alone with children in four new countries). every day brings new adventures both linguistcally and literally. To thrive alone in a remote mountain village in Italy with young children, as Jill found herself following the unexpected early exodus of her husband into the arms of another, was amazing. Note I use the word thrive not survive!!

Jill's writing style is wonderfully fluid and makes the reader realise how,when presented with stones, she was determined to make a bowl of cherries from them. (forgive me Erma Bombeckl). Her financial circumstances, often grave, are made light of and, despite the best efforts of her ex to continually ruin her life, she thwarts his ever increasing attempts to drive her to the brink. Aided by her wonderfully adapted children and copious amounts of wine - as medicinally necessary, and of course some great local friends, she makes the reader feel really comfortable as if they too were joining her close circle of compadres. It must have been very difficult to write her tale but it has served to make the reader both laugh out loud and cry as her experiences changed and the children grew as much as her animal residents increased. The book clearly shows that she has given her children the best life could offer. Open spaces, independence, an appreciation of the value of money and life and a good Italian education that is much harder than the UK system is.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars An unforgettable memoir of an amazing woman and her children
Jill Pennington writes a story that easily be read as excellent fiction, but sadly it isn't - it's true. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Janet Hughes
5.0 out of 5 stars fanbloodytanstic!
Amazing book, I just didnt want it to end. Not the normal expat story but better than...... this story should shame the father of her children,who left her high and dry in a... Read more
Published 1 month ago by julie3
5.0 out of 5 stars Just brilliant!
Honest, funny, moving, - couldn't (and didn't) put this down for a minute, what a brilliant read! Can't wait for the next instalment Jill
Published 1 month ago by Helen
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable woman. Astonishing story.
Jill Pennington is a remarkable woman, and this is an astonishing story. Most people, in Jill’s situation, would probably return to the security and familiarity of the life they... Read more
Published 1 month ago by George Mahood
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
Excellent Could not put it down it was so interesting it was very realistic so It well deserved 5 stars.
Published 2 months ago by White.dove
4.0 out of 5 stars An easy, often funny tale that is honest and straight talking.
The Diary of a Single Parent Abroard by Jill Pennington was published in June 2013. I have enjoyed this tale of an adventure that turned out very differently from the initial... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Lincs Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars Well done Jill
Just finished reading Jill's book, which I really enjoyed. There's never a dull moment in it and Jill has coped so well with all the obstacles that have come her way, and there... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Sandy
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!!
A very good read, enjoyed the story from the start. One very brave and determined lady in a lovely part of the world.
Published 2 months ago by Barry
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Read :-)
I loved this book, I am in the process myself of considering a move to Italy with my son, This book makes me think that if it can be done in this situation then surely I can do it. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Jonah WInwood
5.0 out of 5 stars This is one gutsy lady
To move lock, stock and barrel to another country, as a couple with children, is a daunting prospect, but to move and then get dumped there by your spouse, in an inadequate house... Read more
Published 2 months ago by jill s.
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