Vicious circle ISBN: 9780192717757
Published by O.U.P., 1998
Ten year old Louisa May and her mum Georgette are homeless. They have been wandering for years, and to make up for the grim conditions in which they live, Georgette pretends that they are heroines in one of her beloved romantic novels, and that they live in elegance and splendour. When they fetch up at a run down B & B in a seaside town (courtesy of social services), Georgette gets ill - very ill with TB - and while she is in hospital, Louisa May is looked after by Joanna, a young woman with her own reasons for pretending. While Louisa May and her mum will always have problems, there is reason to believe by the end of the book that at least some of those problems are solvable. Louisa May is a resilient child, who accepts and loves her mum as she is, and the other characters surrounding her are believable if sometimes harrowing.