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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 1 February 2009
Sandy's book portrays only too clearly how Scotland regarded her indigenous Travelling People. Tearing children from their mothers' arms and losing them forever in the Welfare system with no contact whatsoever with their families. Taking them to a life where they were treated at best with total apathy and at worst with mental, physical and sexual abuse. And this was considered better for the child than being with his family? I don't think so! A heart breaking tale told beautifully. Well done Sandy! Mary
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 24 February 2009
Sandy's courageous story makes essential reading for anyone who either works with 'looked after children' or who has experience of being 'looked after'. Sandy provides a graphic picture of how important continued sibling / family contact (providing it is safe to do so) is for all children who have been removed from their parents, how crucial it is that those who have responsibility for 'looked after' children actually listen to them and see them as 'children in need' not simply as a 'case', and that how vulnerable children are when they are living in the 'system'. Above all, Sandy reminds us that despite all the talk and aspirations of a profession wanting to value diversity and embrace different lifestyles, frequently social work practice has been guilty of imposing dominant family values on those families which have a long tradition of being different, in his case 'Scottish Tinkers'.

Eddie O'Hara
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on 6 August 2014
This isn't the sort of book that I usually read. More known for reading anything by, amongst others, Stephen King, James Patterson and Tom Clancy, I saw this book on an e-mailed list of Kindle books that Amazon thought I might be interested in. At first I went straight past it and looked at others, but then later that day saw that I still had the e-mail in my inbox as I had forgotten to delete it.

This time I looked a bit closer at it and then, for whatever reason, decided to try it. I bought it, started to read it 4-5 days later, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Sandy Reid excellently narrates his childhood, from the moment he was taken from his Scottish family of Tinks until when he was 15 year-old.

Passed from foster family to foster family, children's home to children's home, his innocent charm when very young comes across really well, as does his ability to get himself into trouble. Self-preservation plays a big part in his childhood, as does his struggle to cope with learning respect for his mentors, but he always has his family in his mind - especially his sister Maggie and his mother Mary.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 26 January 2014
and you would be right, but for some, the need to put it out there is of benefit to them, so hey who is any one to judge these kind of stories!!
I bought the book for personal reasons
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 20 March 2013
I was advised to read this when I was supporting a traveller child. It was easy to read and I read it over a couple of days giving me food for thought
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 18 November 2013
This is a very good book, the author writes in such a way that you could imagine you were actually there, a very good book, and worth every penny .
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
The author Sandy Reid can make the reader cry - he is brilliant. His mother the gypsy lady would have been so proud of her beloved son today, her love is rare she was the best mother in the world, and a mum is better even in poverty, than all the riches in the world.
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on 23 April 2015
I know the east coast of fife and in the future when I regularly pass these villages I will view them in a different light. I also spent many years teaching in a unit full of boys like sandy So volatile and often violent but no wonder. Kids like this don't stand a chance in hell. I'm glad he found some love from the wee woman with the sticks and although his auntie and uncle may have loved him they would never be able to give him the care he deserved. Poor sandy.....hope he has found love and happiness.
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on 21 March 2014
I loved this book. Easy to read, Story told through the eyes of a child who was inspirational in how he dealt with such tragic circumstances. This cheeky little rascal is such a character and the book is so well written you almost feel you know him. Sad with small doses of humour - this book has it all and told in such a way that I would never doubt the honesty of this little guy and his family who all deserved to be a happy and loving family (together)..
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on 26 March 2014
ahh my heart went out for the wee boy, although he did seem to be a bit of a terror but a loveable rogue. Such a sad story of how he and his sister never knew their mum and dad and siblings through no fault of theirs or their mum as she tried so hard to find them. I don't think his sister realised the love he had for her and how heartbroken he was when they got split up. Brought a few tears to my eyes.
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