‘Real’ Life Not Sugar Coated
These Streets by Luan Goldie is a fascinating look at contemporary life in east London.
The reader is introduced to two families – a single mum with two teens and an elderly father nearby, and a single dad separated from his six year old daughter. All the characters are unique, warm and welcoming. Luan Goldie gives us glimpses into their lives as we witness that it is not money that makes us happy but love and friendship. Some of the richest people are materially poor but with huge hearts.
We witness how our school days form the adults we become. They leave a lasting impression on our lives, for better or for worse. Bad experiences still have the power to hurt twenty years down the line.
There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ family. Families are unique in their make-up and their functioning.
We see a mother’s pride for her children as she puts their needs first. It is sacrificial love in action. Sometimes the truth is hidden in order to protect. We also see the children trying to sort lives to make it easier for their mum. They are a lovely, caring family unit.
A single dad whose daughter now lives in Spain, struggles to come to terms with being alone. His bond with his beagle Harold makes the reader smile as we see the love between them. Harold becomes a character in his own right.
Luan Goldie tells us life as it is in east London. She does not sugar coat it. We see the deprivation, the dysfunctional lives and we see the love and care. It is a place where people know your name.
I always love Luan Goldie’s novels. She writes about ‘real’ people with ‘real’ problems. The nitty gritty of life is laid bare. Life is hard but there is much love and laughter. These Streets is a fabulous read.
I received a free copy from Harper Collins. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.