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Saving Daisy Saving Daisy is the second critically novel by Phil EarleHEROIC Phil Earle's hugely anticipated third novel is out on 24 April 2013Daisy's mum is gone Her dad refuses to talk about it As far as Daisy's concerned it's all her fault As her life starts to spiral out of control panic leads to tragedy and Daisy's left aloneBut sometimes the kindness of a stranger can turn things around A stranger who desperately wants to save Daisy if she'll only let herself be saved A powerful and moving story linked to Phil Earle's critically acclaimed debut book Being BillyPraise for Being Billy'A wonderful book' Morris Gleitzman'Phil Earle writes starkly but sensitively in this brilliant page turning novel It moved me to tears' Jacueline Wilson'This may be the most authoritative honest and moving account of children trapped in the care system to date' Keith Gray Scotsman 'life affirming redemptive and really just rather good' Marcus Sedgwick Guardian'Moving and powerful I loved it' Sophie McKenzie 'Being Billy was a total page turner authentic and gritty Billy's voice doesn't falter spiky brave and compassionate Jenny Downham


About the Author: Phil Earle

Phil was born in Hull in 1974 and he studied English and Drama at Hull University He worked for a year as a carer in a children’s home then after training as a drama therapist he worked in a therapeutic community in London which cared for multiply abused adolescents Then changing tack completely he chose a marginally sedate life as a children’s bookseller It was here that he develope



10 thoughts on “Saving Daisy

  1. says:

    LoveloveloveCan I just leave it at that?Can we just call that my review?No? You want ? God sometimes you are the most demanding readers everYou will know by now how much I loved Being Billy by Phil Earle so I was practically chomping at the bit to read his next book Saving Daisy tells the story of Daisy Houghton who you will know if you’ve read Billy’s story I’ve been thinking about how to class Saving Daisy and I’m failing miserably I wouldn’t call it a seuel and you know I wouldn’t even call it a companion bookActually you know what? I’m going to use my YA reviewing power it’s a real thing of course it is to say that Saving Daisy is a standalone book DefinitelyThis is Daisy’s story and no one gets a look in And this is her timeOf course I loved Being Billy but Saving Daisy in my opinion was even betterI’m going to avoid talking about the plot because it’s good to know as little as you can before reading this book I find that this book’s shocks and twists are infinitely better when they thwack you across the back of the head completely out of the blue If you’ve read Being Billy you may have an inkling of what happened to her before her cameo in BB But take that inkling and throw it out of the window because mate you have no ideaThis book made me laugh hysterically This book made me so unbelievably angry This book made me want to put The Shawshank Redemption on and weep into a pillow This book broke my heartAt first I thought it was the subject matter something that is very personal to me and I thought maybe I was just connecting to it because of that and there was a chance that I was being biased But then I thought that I was doing a huge disservice to Mr Earle’s writing which is the main reason my heart now lies bleeding on my bedroom floorMy favourite kind of writer is an authentic writer one that knows what they’re talking about and Mr Earle’s writing is 100% authentic Through my unrivalled researching skills like um Googling him and looking at his ‘About Me’ section on his website I found out that Mr Earle used to work as a care worker before he became a writer And this shows He doesn’t sugar coat the issues that children like Billy and Daisy have nor does he make them horrifying than they are just to make a good storyMr Earle employs a great subtlety to his writing that made this book so affective In the hands of a lesser writer Daisy’s story could have got very overwhelming extremely fast I won’t lie to you there is a lot of angst in this book If you’re looking for neat happy endings and conclusions that come with a nice bow then I couldn’t recommend this book to you You can tell that Mr Earle is a huge fan of telling uncomfortable unforgettable and realistic books that might not always be the most fun to read but they challenge the reader and really make them thinkWhich is lucky because so am II always find that there is a common criticism for authors who write for teenagers and it is how can an adult write authentically for teenagers? And I won’t lie some authors can’t Their dialogue is cringey and unrealistic the issues are picked randomly and sensationalised because that’s what they feel teenagers worry about and then some authors put horrifying cultural references shudders to show how ‘cool’ they are luckily Mr Earle doesn’t rely on that to show that he’s a brilliant teen writer He relies on his writingBut what about a grown man writing from the perspective of a teenage girl?Nah he’s got that covered tooDaisy Houghton was such a glorious character and I would like to be best friends with her Without the risk of sounding like a fruit loop What do you mean it’s too late for that? I like to judge my YA books on whether I would like hang out with the main charactersAnd with this I mind I would like to be best friends with Daisy HoughtonI’m not sure how I feel about getting up early to go cliff trekking but a third of my degree was in film studies so I would be than willing to sit and watch and discuss films while I ate an entire bag of popcorn Actually no strike that I loved Daisy so much I would share my popcorn with her something that is unheard of People have lost fingers for attempting to get at my popcornWhen I looked back at my notes to write this review I noticed that as the book went on and we got to know Daisy it seemed I became and protective of her One actually reads “OMG DON’T YOU DARE DO THAT” Well not actually because my Kindle typing is ridiculous and I was trying to balance standing on the train so it really read “ohk font yu dare dp tht” but the sentiment still standsI loveloveloved her and she will be forever one of my most authentic genuine compassionate broken favourite YA heroinesOK just had a skim through my review and it seems to be sponsored by the word “authentic” but I make no apologies because isn’t that what you want in a contemporary book?It can also be sponsored by the word “British” “compelling” “horrifying” “hopeful” “brilliant” “powerful” “unflinching” “astonishing” and “OMGWHYAREN’TYOUREADINGIT?”The latter word I feel the most aptAnd of course it’s a word so be uietIt’s so wonderful to find yet another British YA author who will be added to my “Read Everything They Write Even if it’s on a Post It” listOh and before I go I just want to say that it’s really refreshing to read a YA book set in Northern England It’s good to see that there are authors believe in THE DREADED NORTH and not that the UK just ends after you’ve left London It may be grim up here but as Mr Earle has shown it proves for brilliant storiesActually there is a part in Saving Daisy right at the end that was so wonderful and moving and gorgeous that I rushed back to read a certain part in Being Billy and it made a lot sense and made both books poignant Maybe that’s me Maybe I’ll bribe one of you who haven’t read either of them to read Saving Daisy first and then Being Billy and see if my theory is correct Muhahahaha I’m like the Dr Jekyll of YA blogging cue lightning boltsI very nearly fell out with my best friend who dared to suggest we got salty popcorn once I mean urgh


  2. says:

    The first thing that I'm going to say about this book is simply 'Wow' I didn't know much about this book when I picked it up only that I liked Daisy's character in Being Billy Earle's debut novel I could see a lot of potential and depth in Daisy from her appearance in Being Billy and this book certainly reached and topped that potential This is a sort of preuel to that though it is a standalone and so it's not necessary to read Being Billy before you pick this one upIt is very clear from the start that Earle has had experience in the children's care sector of work He has worked as a carer in a children's home and also in a therapeutic community His experience allows him to portray an extremely raw and realistic tale of a very troubled girl Daisy Although she is only fourteen for the most part of the book she is very developed in her complex thoughts and feelings even if they aren't positive ones For this reason I think this book would appeal to adults as well as older teenagers The setting for this story is mostly in Bellfield a therapeutic community and a very frank good representation of life there is given A lot of different mental health care aspects are explored from fitting in with others medication side effects the positive affect of charities and the need for trust with any therapistsThe general atmosphere for our protagonist is set straight away From the beginning the novel is full of mystery and intrigue It is clear from the first lines that Daisy is not just a two dimensional character but much complex I was drawn to her and wanted to know We get to see the reasoning behind some of her thoughts uite early in on the book though there is certainly a lot to learn about Daisy and the people she meets throughout My attention was completely captured by her mental health issues Earle deals with emotional and behavioural issues such as self harm in an experienced tactful manner He shows how methodical it is for Daisy and gives the reader a real idea of what it is like for someone who self injures Daisy has a huge weight burdening her and she has done for all of her life I often felt as though I was sharing this weight with her and at a lot of points it was very difficult to read Daisy has a lot of important relationships with her father and with Ade her key worker in particular I loved Ade she was so connected to Daisy so caring and managed to put me at ease there was definitely an air of confidence and security about her Naomi and the several other characters she meets whilst in the therapeutic community also play important roles in her life Everyone who is introduced has a uniue personality and it was fantastic to read a book in which people with mental health issues weren't stereotypical There are several twists and turns in this book which made it compulsive reading though I often did have to put it down as some of the subject matter was very difficult emotionally to read about There are an abundance of subjects tackled from student teacher relationships self harm friendships and differences grieving love and loss Different coping methods are explored as are the difference in our thought processes The action and change in this novel is almost non stop which makes it a real page turner I think that Earle does manage to despite all the difficulties give us a real sense of hope This is a very touching sad but inspiring story that I'm very thankful that I read I can't wait to see what Phil Earle has to offer us next


  3. says:

    'Saving Daisy' is an emotionally charged and powerful read from the British author of 'Being Billy' Be warned now that you'll need to have a box of tissues beside you while you're reading this book because it will rip your heart outPhil Earle's writing is unflinchingly honest He's not afraid to tackle difficult or emotive topics such as death and bereavement rape bullying drinking and other such issues His background as a care worker is obvious here when reading about the main character Daisy and the experiences she goes through He writes sensitively about her and her issues whilst also portraying a realistic view of life in a therapeutic community for teenagers I thought the relationship she had with her key worker Ade was one of great trust It was obvious that not only did Ade care deeply about Daisy and her road to recovery but it was touching to see how much Daisy came to value Ade's friendship by the end of the bookSome parts of the story made for difficult reading and it was hard at times to see how much Daisy blamed herself for not only her mother's death but also for many of the things that happen to her Trying to correct the way she thinks about herself and establish a positive outlook for the future is one of the struggles that she has to face I found the ending and overall message of the book to be full of hope showing that there's always a way through the pain for everyone no matter how bleak a person's future can look and no matter what someone has had to go through 'Saving Daisy' is not a light read but it's one that will stay with you long after turning the last page It's heartbreaking at times and will take you on an emotional rollercoaster of a ride but it's worth every second and is a book I would definitely recommend to others


  4. says:

    I cried I laughed I loved I grieved Saving Daisy was an emotional roller coaster – one I adored and was sad to leave Or precisely I was heartbroken to leave Daisy I really really loved her and Ade too Daisy never knew her Mum Her Dad won’t – can’t – talk about her In Daisy’s eyes it was her faultAs the fear the misplaced guilt over her Mum’s death gets stronger and stronger; her ways of coping become violent extreme But the one person she decides to trust does something they shouldn’t have and once Daisy tells herself she’s to blame Her life spirals out of control and before she knows it Daisy is all aloneShe doesn’t want help doesn’t think she deserves it She’s bad luck in her eyes everyone she lets in gets hurt or hurts her But can the kindness of a single stranger one who is desperate to help be enough to bring her back from brink Will Daisy Houghton even let herself be saved?I love contemp books especially ones that made me think feel and although I don’t know why I like it so much cry Saving Daisy made me do all three of these things and I loved every moment wrapped up in Daisy’s world her fears I was so completely addicted from start to finish unable to put the book down desperate to know what happened to Daisy By the end I desperately wanted to read the whole book all over again and I need Being BillyDaisy Houghton was a wonderful girl snarkily funny film addicted clever She was also drowning in her fear and guilt I loved her from the word go constantly telling her “It’s not your fault Daisy” She was so scared betrayed by the ones she let it always on the edge of everything To begin with I thought her guilt was ridiculous but in her mind she really thought she was responsible I felt so bad for her because I loved her so much She was just so strong so stubborn and she had to grow up so fast I loved it when we got to see the sweet grieving side of Daisy rather than the guilt ridden self blaming one She was so real to me it felt like I was the only one she trustedAde Daisy’s key worker was lovely The moment she walked in she made Daisy feel better like she was “being saved” and made me smile She really looked out for Daisy was really smart laidback instructive without being bossy She was just so strong and really understood Daisy and I loved her so much Bellfield the place Daisy was sent to “find the answer” was amazing You had so many different characters The overly friendly sweet Susie who didn’t really understand personal space The argumentative snarky slightly violent Patrick The constantly texting perhaps perhaps not delusional laidback Jimmy who couldn’t uite tell the difference between fantasy and reality The moody short tempered irrational unpredictable Naomi The various careers young laid back Floss; efficient friendly respected by all Bex; the lovely kind patient Ade All the different personalities made for a chaotic volatile never dull place My favourite was by far Jimmy Ade not included I loved Jimmy style therapy watching washing machines – “sweet” You definitely have the “X Factor” JimmyThe writing was amazing It was raw emotional powerful addictive It was teenager but the voice of a teenager who knows too much It was Daisy 100% I adored the descriptions brilliant but not too heavy I just loved the edginess everything I just loved Earle’s writing Enough saidI thought the plot would be straight forward from the blurb Boy was I wrong There were twists I never saw coming plot turns I never would have thought of character changes that surprised me I loved every turn every unpredictable development I was completely hooked from start to finishWhat struck me straight away about Saving Daisy were the emotions Instantly I was tangled in Daisy’s head not exactly sure where my emotions stopped and hers began It felt like I was drowning in Daisy’s feelings in my own It was overwhelming in the very best way I was so wrapped up in the book in Daisy invested It was a roller coaster of emotions the main ones pain sadness grief love and sympathy I was almost constantly on the verge of tears so the little bright spots the small breakthroughs the parts that made me smile were even potent But in some probably twisted way I loved crying the constant battling emotions Crying meant I adored this book and its characters and truly cared about what happened to them Because I didA heartbroken guilt ridden scarred heroine afraid to trust or love a caring always smiling care worker with a secret of her own and the hardest journey of all facing your fears you guilt and realising it wasn’t your fault putting yourself back together Saving Daisy was an emotional powerful read that left my head spinning I won’t forget you Daisy Not in a long time


  5. says:

    Having met Daisy in Phil Earle’s Being Billy I was eager to find out her story I have to say I haven’t been disappointed Daisy’s life is just as intense and gripping as Billy’s wasThe prologue really does hook the reader in – you want to know if Daisy really did what she said or was it a misconception?The first part of Saving Daisy we get to understand the relationship she has with her dad and learn about the strategy she’s developed of seeming to belong with her peers while holding herself apart We also find out that recently Daisy found a report which makes her responsible for the loss of her mother To alleviate the panic this brings Daisy copes in the only way that brings her relief – she self harmsInteraction with a new teacher starting at school leads to tragedy and Daisy finds herself living in a ‘therapeutic community’ where key worker Ade has the task of building trust and sharing strategies to help Daisy come to terms with her misconceptions and how to deal with the anxietypanic In the therapeutic community we get to experience many dramas with the interaction of the other four residents and staff as well as Daisy’s journeyThe build up to the final crisis is nail biting and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough I loved how the resolution tied in with Billy’s lifeSaving Daisy is written in the first person from Daisy’s perception I think the author’s experience of working in a care homeas a drama therapist really shines through in Daisy’s personality It certainly shows how well he knew the people he cared forThe characters in Saving Daisy are true to life and we get to know them through their dialogue and actions rather than descriptive writingI can only commend Phil Earle for his portrayal of one of the ‘darker’ aspects of life that once again not everyone wants to acknowledge or accept He does not embellish or dramatise self harming – he writes it as it is I think readers will empathise with Daisy and I think uite a lot of people will identify with thoughts we have that aren’t reality or even logicalAlthough Daisy is a character in Being Billy you don’t have to have read it to be able to understand DaisyOh and my favourite scene? just has to be Daisy’s 15th birthday and old video footage I found myself grinning inanely while crying at the same time – joySaving Daisy is YA but I recommend anyone who is a people watcher interested in psychology likes drama and tension or has no fear of confronting the darker side of life pick up a copy for yourself You won’t be boredJera's Jamboree at Wordpress


  6. says:

    Argh This is one of those books One of those impossibly difficult to review yet utterly brilliant books which I absolutely loved Just thinking about reading Saving Daisy makes my heart ache a little So I’m going to try and review it But in case I just ramble on incoherently my basic advice to everyone is; just read this bookFrom the prologue we knew something would happen to Daisy’s dad I wasn’t expecting to be uite as affected as I was not because it related to anything that’s happened to me but because it crystallised almost every fear I have for my family at one time or another What made it worse for me was that I could really relate to Daisy’s relationship with her father particularly when it came to their afternoon tea bickies and a movie ritual Daisy wasn’t perfect and that’s what makes her such a wonderful character She made me angry and frustrated at times But she also made me smile worry and hope for her future Earle is one of my favourite authors because he creates characters which are so damn real it’s almost unbelievableIn both Being Billy and Saving Daisy Earle writes with an unflinching honesty which left me raw with emotion He doesn’t shy away from thoroughly uncomfortable topics like grief anxiety anger and self harm Yet it doesn’t feel like a contrived ‘issues book’ for teenagers No in this Daisy’s story just is I finished the book feeling hopeful for Daisy’s future but it was by no means a happy ending or compensation for the enormous trauma she suffered It’s clear Earle’s own experience as a care worker in a home like that in Saving Daisy played a huge part in making this feel so incredibly realIt’s hard to describe just how beautiful and heartbreaking Saving Daisy is Earle is undeniably one of Britain’s best contemporary young adult writers and this is a must read for fans of the genre This review and many can be found at The Unfinished Bookshelf


  7. says:

    Since reading the fabulous Being Billy I have been looking forward to reading Daisy's story Now that I have Phil Earle has truly cemented himself as an author I will read simply because his name is on the cover I absolutely loved itThe events of Saving Daisy take place before Being Billy making this a preuel of sorts I loved finding out all about Daisy and having the story told from her point of view I adored her in Being Billy and loved her even after reading this One of the things I really liked about Being Billy was the authentic voice given to Billy and I have to say that he did it again with Daisy She's so real you can't help but get swept up in her story and feel everything she felt I felt so bad for her and everything she goes through She's so convinced that everything is her fault that she deserves to be alone Her reaction to her mother's death is understandable it must be very hard to deal with and I hated that someone used that to get close to her when he shouldn't And of course the accident would be hard for anyone to deal with add it all together and it's not surprising that she finds it hard to copeAgain it's obvious that Phil Earle has experience working with kids it shines through in his writing He has such an understanding of what Daisy and kids like her are going through the whole story is just spot on and feels completely realistic Powerfully so I so desperately wanted Daisy to stop blaming herself to find a way to see that none of it was her fault And I loved Ade her key worker and how she manages to help Daisy see the truthI can't recommend this highly enough I loved Being Billy but this managed to surpass all my expectations An absolute must read


  8. says:

    Daisy's story is an incredibly emotional devastating and uplifting novel It had me in floods of tears out of sadness and happiness I hasn't felt uite so emotional over a book in a long timeEarle has a tragically beautiful writing style It is gritty and raw and brutally honest I haven't read his first novel Being Billy but after finishing Saving Daisy I can't wait toWhen starting the novel I has absolutely no idea where it was going to go There were so many possibilities and I wasn't able to predict it I don't want to say the novel doesn't have a plot because it does but it is about so much than the plot It is about Daisy's growth as a character and having the strength and hope to keep going when things get toughSaving Daisy book is hard to read at times and the book deals with difficult subject matters but it is a book worth reading if you like books about real people with real problems Ultimately the book is about hope and it definitely gave me some of my own


  9. says:

    Absolutely astonishing read Maybe because I'm at that right age to appreciate Daisy's turmoil I felt like I connected with her however I have never been through anything that Daisy has been through I love books like this especially because my passion is working with children and families One day I'd like to be like Ade Although I have never personally experienced what Daisy has I have known people with certain similar traits or who have experienced some of what Daisy has Phil Earle has an absolute talent for writing from the point of view of a very emotionally damaged teenage girl Saving Daisy is a superb book and I would highly recommend it to everyone


  10. says:

    This book was much better than I'd anticipated and it was very original too Definitely a story worth reading


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