Book Of The Month September, 2009
Ma, I’m Gettin Meself a New…Martha Long
In this second volume of Martha Long’s bestselling memoirs, aged 13, Martha is rescued by the courts from the clutches of her evil stepfather, Jackser, and her feckless mother, Sally. After numerous arrests for shoplifting, a judge rules that she is to be sent to a convent school with the instruction that she is to get an education. Her initial relief at escaping the abuse and neglect she suffered at home is, however, short-lived, as she soon realises that there are many forms of cruelty in this life. As she says, You can have a full belly, but your heart can be very empty. Ostracised by the other children for being a street kid and put to back-breaking work by the nuns, she leads a lonely existence, her only joy coming from the books she devours and her mischievous sense of humour. Desperate for love and a little place where she feels she belongs, despite all that she has suffered Martha retains her compassion for others and still continues to hope for a brighter future when she will be free to make her own way in life.
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What We Think
Ailsa Morrison, Mainstream Publishing Marketing, on Ma’ I’m Gettin Meself a New Mammy:
Martha Long has had the kind of life most people only experience in their worst nightmares. She has survived against the odds and stands to tell the story of her life in a way that only she can. Writing in mainly colloquial Dublin slang she writes in the voice of her 13yr old self, detailing how she continued, as a teenager to battle through the neglect and abuse she experienced at the hands of those that should have been protecting her. In this, her second memoir, Martha is rescued from her abusive home by the courts and sent to a convent school to get an education. Sadly the often sinister stereotype of these schools, as depicted in films like The Magdalene Sisters, rings true in Martha’s experiences and she finds herself alongside so many other similarly unwanted children. Martha is ostracized for being a ‘street kid’ and is put to back-breaking work as a domestic slave by the hard-hearted nuns. She endures a dark and lonely existence, brightened only by the books she devours and her mischievous and irrepressible sense of humour. True to this early interest in reading and her keen spirit she has written what is truly an inspirational second part to her memoirs.