"… a highly convincing and totally absorbing read."
Vanessa, Joel and Toby are unceremoniously dumped on their Aunt Kendra by their grandmother who intends to join her boyfriend in Jamaica. Each of the children deals with this abandonment in different ways. The teenage Vanessa goes off the rails through drink and drugs and by hooking up with a violent boyfriend, known as ‘Blade’. Seven year-old Toby retreats into an inner world where no one can touch him and his elder brother, Joel, protects him. But it is Joel, despite the attentions of a benevolent mentor, Ivan, and a talent for writing poetry, who finds it increasingly difficult to escape the world that he is in.
All of the children’s lives are entwined and connected to the characters that dominate the world of the West London housing estates. Not all of the influences are malign.