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Writing in the Sand by Helen Brandom

Writing in the Sand

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A compelling and at times heart-breaking contemporary teen drama from debut author Helen Brandom. Tackling topical subjects it is subtle, insightful and utterly absorbing read. It's the story of Amy - she has two choices. Does she tell the truth about the abandoned baby, or keep quiet and live a lie, forever? It's a novel that is sure to get teens thinking and talking so perfect for teen/YA reading groups too.


Writing in the Sand by Helen Brandom

“Amy! Wait till you hear this...” I hold my breath.
“What?” I say.
“Last night someone left a baby on our doorstep.” My heart stops. This is it, I think. Now what do I do?

Sixteen-year-old Amy is used to keeping secrets – about her mum’s illness, her irresponsible sister and her ex-boyfriend. Amy is her mum’s sole carer and every day is filled with tiny battles to achieve the simplest things, from cooking a meal to keeping the house clean, especially when social services come round. No matter how difficult stuff gets, Amy doesn’t want anything to change. But then a shocking discovery turns everything upside-down.
When a newborn baby is left on her best friend’s doorstep, it becomes the talk of the town, and only Amy holds the key to the baby's identity. Now she has two choices: tell the truth, or live a lie forever.

Includes extra materials for reading groups.

Writing in the Sand tackles topical subjects of young carers, teenage pregnancy and adoption with an accessible and sensitive voice. Recent statistics showed that the UK has the highest teenage birth rate in Western Europe, while nearly a quarter of a million children in England and Wales are caring for a relative.


'Written with insight, wisdom, a deep understanding of important teen issues and with extra material at the end for reading groups, this is a book to set hearts beating and minds in motion. An outstanding debut' - Lancashire Evening Post; 'This is a beautifully written book with a captivating and heart wrenching storyline that I found difficult to put down... An outstanding debut' - Bookbabblers; 'Poignant and subtly amusing' - Harrogate Advertiser; 'Fast-paced, realistic... it kept me interested throughout' - Teen Titles; 'Helen Brandom's protagonist, Amy, is a delight' - Independent on Sunday; 'Deals head on with important, all-too-common teenage issues' - The Irish Examiner'

About the Author

Helen Brandom

A former primary school teacher, Helen Brandom has written numerous plays, serials and drama episodes for the stage and radio, with her work broadcast on TV and BBC Radio. Writing in the Sand is her debut novel.

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Book Info

Publication date

1st April 2014


Helen Brandom

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Usborne Publishing Ltd


320 pages


NewGen - YA Fiction
Reading Groups
Relationship Stories
eBook Favourites

Family & home stories (Children's / Teenage)



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