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25 Reviews
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, dark, heartfelt
A harrowing and poignant account of the after-effects of abortion on both genders, what it's like to feel there's something missing when you don't have children, and child abuse/neglect.
Hard to read at times, as there is graphic imagery (particularly a description of a D-I-Y abortion) and upsetting content but all the same engrossing.
As in other examples of...
Published on 5 Mar. 2010 by A. Lewis

versus
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard to Read
A pretty harrowing read to be honest. I have always avoided this novel of Townsend's, knowing what subject matter she would be addressing and not being entirely comfortable with it. After her death I decided to make an effort to read her entire oeuvre and this was the last thing on my list.

I cannot say I like it. I cannot say I enjoyed reading it. It was...
Published 4 months ago by Mrs. K. A. Wheatley


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, dark, heartfelt, 5 Mar. 2010
By 
A. Lewis (Newcastle-under-Lyme, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
A harrowing and poignant account of the after-effects of abortion on both genders, what it's like to feel there's something missing when you don't have children, and child abuse/neglect.
Hard to read at times, as there is graphic imagery (particularly a description of a D-I-Y abortion) and upsetting content but all the same engrossing.
As in other examples of Townsend's work, such as The Queen and I, each character has their own distinct voice and she switches between them effortlessly.
The dark content is a stark contrast to the lighter, more comedic tone of the Adrian Mole series.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling, haunting, 6 May 2012
By 
H. Petre "hpoet" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
Sue Townsend is a superb author. In this true-to-life tale, Townsend describes her central characters without judgement, leaving the reader to decide. There are no heroes here, but real people who in one way or another are all victims of poverty, ignorance, addiction, loss, or grief. The story centres on two couples: Angela and Christopher who were together seventeen years ago until a difficult abortion forced them apart, and Tamara and Crackle, a young mother with learning difficulties, her crack-addicted boyfriend, and their toddler, Storme, named after a character from the 90s Tv show, Gladiators. All of this is set in a stark wintry landscape around an unnamed East Midlands town. If this sounds too grim for words, please don't give up before you start. The story line, dark though it may be, draws the reader in, and there are a couple of wry twists in the very tail end.
An unexpected quality emerges on reading this book for the first time, twelve years after publication: the Britain Townsend describes already seems vanished: no more Woolworths pick-n-mix, no more shabby charity shops selling a golf ball next to a single sock and a dog bowl. No more cameras with film that must be waited for to be developed. Even the Greasy Spoon cafes and the high street travel agents are on the way out. If, as Philip Larkin says, That will be England gone, I can think of no finer way to to document its passing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ghost Children, 20 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Ghost Children (Kindle Edition)
This is a really riveting, though at times, quite a disquieting read. I read this after reading 'The Woman who went to Bed for a Year.' Two quite different reads, I I actually preferred this one. A very interesting take on finding your first love all over again. In some ways, quite sad too. Definitely recommended!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thouroughly enjoyable, 2 July 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
The first book I read in ages, Ghost Children kept me glued to the pages and, to use an old cliche, I couldn't put it down. Literally. Admittedly, I bought the book after reading Adrian Mole, not worrying too much about the subject. I was in fact immediatedly disappointed by the lack of humour as is typical of Townsend but I soon realised that humour in dealing with a book like this would be inappropriate and Townsend's tyle is perfect, dealing with the subject very well indeed. Thouroughly enjoyable.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard to Read, 1 Sept. 2014
By 
Mrs. K. A. Wheatley "katywheatley" (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
A pretty harrowing read to be honest. I have always avoided this novel of Townsend's, knowing what subject matter she would be addressing and not being entirely comfortable with it. After her death I decided to make an effort to read her entire oeuvre and this was the last thing on my list.

I cannot say I like it. I cannot say I enjoyed reading it. It was uncomfortable and upsetting, but written in her usual clear style with her eye for social niceties, and otherwise, used to full effect. The satire and darkness which lurks under the gentle exterior of the Mole books, and is more fully expressed in the later Mole volumes, and in The Woman Who Went to Bed for a Year, is given free rein here, and with little humour to lift it. Understandably, given the content.

Not a favourite of mine. I prefer it when she wrote with a slightly lighter touch, not because what she had to say was any less important then, because she could still cut to the heart of an issue, I just prefer a little light in the middle of bleakness.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping, 19 Feb. 2014
This review is from: Ghost Children (Kindle Edition)
Another great read from my favourite author. The title was off putting and that's why I didn't read it before now. Shocking, moving and addictive.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Sue's best, 1 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
A brilliant book. Very entertaining, and I found it hard to put down. A great read. Almost believavble The plot was intriguing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Areally interesting book!, 23 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Ghost Children (Kindle Edition)
I found this book to be really interesting I couldn't put it down!
I thought it was very well written but I think all of Sue Townsend books are great you know when you buy one of her books that you are in for a treat!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely book, 27 Oct. 2012
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This review is from: Ghost Children (Kindle Edition)
Well written. Good story with believeable characters. Sue Townsend is so good at gritty reality and manages to balance this with humour to create a thoroughly enjoyable read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A BLEAK NOVEL, 1 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Ghost Children (Paperback)
I had not known Sue Townsend for anything but her diaries about Adrian Mole, and her skittish novels about members of the royal family, so to read this novel was quite a revelation. It was a bleak novel, even the weather contributed to the overall bleakness of the novel, yet in spite of this bleakness it was a very good read, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It deals with five main characters, and their differing attitudes to children and more explicitly babies. .The novel moved along at a good pace, and the descriptive parts were particularly good, the state of Tamara and Cackle flat comes to mind, and the mind-set that exists with many dysfunctional family groups. .
Well worth the read, and not too long for the subject matter.
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Ghost Children
Ghost Children by Sue Townsend (Paperback - 30 Aug. 2012)
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