A Sixteen-year-old’s response to “Thursday’s Child”

September 23, 2018 at 2:36 pm | Posted in Australia, book reviews, discrimination, Growing up in the 1950s and 60s, Reading, Social mores, Writing and Life | 7 Comments
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I had a great chat with my friend and her granddaughter, yesterday. We talked about my novel, “Thursday’s Child” which Natasha, who is in Year 10 high school, had recently read, along with my first novel, “Ben’s Challenge”.  Natasha told me what she thought were the issues raised throughout “Thursday’s Child”. We discussed the conditions most girls and women faced back in early 1960s and compared them with what they face today.

Natasha had written her thoughts on the book before we met, in the form of a review , and she said I could share it on my blog. I am really pleased to present the thoughts of a reader from the demographic my book is targeted at. Thank you Tasha.

 

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Review of “Thursday’s Child” by Natasha Ireland

 

Thursday’s Child, by Linda Visman. Is a story of a teenage girl named Tori who faces many challenges around education and having to be brought up with a family on the poverty line. The biggest challenge she faces is the consequence of a violent incident which she experiences at the beginning of the story. Visman exposes her central character to many valuable lessons that come through the hardship that is face by Tori and how she is able to overcome this towards the end of the story.

 

Tori has many different people who influence her life in good and bad ways. The story shows how the men in her life have not impacted her life in a good way as life in the 1960s was tough for Tori ue to sexism and inequality towards women. Even her own father shows her no sympathy despite her terrible dilemma. He doesn’t care about what Tori wants or how important her education will be for her future. Tori’s mother says to her, “It’s not fair at all. But that’s what the law says. The man makes the decisions and we have to abide by ‘em”.

 

Tori’s treatment helps women of our generation now to understand how far women have come from those days and how many more opportunities we can have. Although this issue is still continued in certain countries, women over time will work to dismiss this issue for good.

 

The story will help boys to understand how difficult life was and can still be for women. This could explain many terrible issues women face and help them to respect us more equally.

 

Rape, abuse and unwanted pregnancy are a few of the major disadvantages of women in Tori’s time. However, Visman wants the reader to see how much of an independent and tough woman Tori becomes through the story after the stressful events that have taken place in her life. Increasingly empowered, she continues to do anything she can to do what is right for her and does not surrender to the force of the men in her life.

 

The protagonist is a bright and intelligent girl who is trapped in the reality of her times. She recognises her escape is through her education. She is a remarkable role model for self-determination and courage.

 

Natasha Ireland, Year 10.

 

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Accentuate the Positive

September 2, 2015 at 9:02 pm | Posted in Family, Gratitude, Memoir, role model | 7 Comments
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Recently I read a post about inspiration on a writing blog that included the words to the song, Ac-cent-tchu-ate the Positive. (Music written by Harold Arlen; lyrics by Johnny Mercer; published 1944).

The blog writer said it was Frank Sinatra who sang it, but Bing Crosby actually first sang it in blackface in “Here Come the Waves”, and I distinctly remember Bing singing it with the Andrews Sisters. (Here it is, 1940s). Our whole family loved Bing Crosby, and I think it was because he sang it that I remember it so well from my childhood.

You’ve got to accentuate the positive

Eliminate the negative

And latch on to the affirmative

Don’t mess with Mister In-Between

You’ve got to spread joy up to the maximum

Bring gloom down to the minimum

Have faith or pandemonium’s

Liable to walk upon the scene

I have spoken before about my father and his positive attitude to life. Seeing the words brought back many so memories of Dad. In later life, when he was legally blind, deaf, physically ailing and often lonely (Mum had died many years before), instead of bemoaning his fate, he would sing this song and whoever was there would join in singing with him.

My dad, Ernest Thompson August 2007, aged 86

My dad, Ernest Thompson August 2007, aged 86

Whenever he was asked how he was, he’d say, “Top of the world!”, even if he wasn’t feeling that way. He said that always talking positive would make you feel better and that saying negative things only made you feel bad. So, he would always accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative and cultivate an ‘attitude of gratitude’ for the things he did have..

He was a great role model for us all, not just family and friends, but everyone he came into contact with. He has been physically gone for over two years now, but he will always be there for me.

Linda Visman

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