Being Tommy’s mother is too much for Sonya.
Too much love, too much fear, too much longing for the cool wine she gulps from the bottle each night. Because Sonya is burning the fish fingers, and driving too fast, and swimming too far from the shore, and Tommy’s life is in her hands.
Once there was the thrill of a London stage, a glowing acting career, fast cars, handsome men. But now there are blackouts and bare cupboards, and her estranged father showing up uninvited. There is Mrs O’Malley spying from across the road. There is the risk of losing Tommy – forever.
Bright Burning Things is an utterly compelling and beautifully written story about one woman’s journey through addiction and motherhood that I read all in one afternoon, so involved in the unfolding drama that I found it hard to put down.
Sonya is a vividly drawn and utterly engaging character, even as you see the darkness around her, the main thing you take away is the pure,unadulterated love she has for her child. Lisa Harding is a genuine wordsmith, using the power of language to bring Sonya to life, to make the reader care as deeply about what happens to her as those around her do.
Its actually a very difficult book to describe, its firmly in the “you had to be there” category, but it is completely brilliant and probably one of the most insightful and inspiring novels I have read in some time.