My rating: 4 of 5 stars
It’s Sadie’s 15th birthday and, as you do on every birthday, she’s got cards. The small problem is that one of these cards comes from her Dad.
See, Sadie doesn’t know who her Dad is. He’s a sperm-donor who her mum found on the internet, back in the dawn of the online world. And now Sadie’s got a card from him.
I really loved this. With a unique, and sympathetic point of view, Phillips tells the story of how Sadie discovers who her father is. It’s a bit Mamma Mia if Mamma Mia were set in Hackney and featured a very funny and food obsessed family. There’s a brilliant bit in it which had me in stitches (you’ll know it when you get there, it’s the bit where Sadie starts yelling the food menu!)
It also deals with an unusual subject and does so very nicely. Sadie’s search for identity leads her down several blind-allies and these are funny, sharp, and painful in equal measure. What’s quite lovely is that Phillips doesn’t forget the adults in this situation and writes a world of reactions that are understandable, moving and acutely painful.
I bawled at the ending because it was really very lovely. It was satisfying, and it was all heart-warming, and it was just right.
The only problem is that now, because I can never do my hair without six days worth of notice, I have major hair envy of Sadie’s ability.