The Carer, by Deborah Moggach, is a bittersweet story of two sexagenarian siblings

The Carer, by Deborah Moggach, is a bittersweet story of two sexagenarian siblings

“Beatrice is one of those individuals who is consciously trying very hard to be a good person. Not that she isn’t naturally a good person. It’s just that she’s always making such an effort at it”

Another favourite story was Shearing Season. Jamie is a ‘strangely gifted eleven-year old’ who wants to be an astronaut but lives on a remote sheep farm in the Lake District. When Miles, a PhD student in Aerospace Engineering, comes to lodge at the farm the boy sees a potential opportunity to ‘break into the space travel industry’. Miles sets Jamie a series of tests. The denouement of this tale is exquisitely rendered.

Accelerate is a fabulous read – layered and nuanced with the added bonus of a scene set on a hill not far from where I live. I wasn’t convinced that the dialogue section fitted (I am reviewing a proof so it is possible this will be changed in the final edit). I adored what the author did with the starling murmuration. The poignant ending was perfect.

The Flat Roof is one of the shorter of the stories and offers less breadth and progression. It is a study of grief, the weight of it, again using avian imagery.

An enjoyable, striking collection with a fine balance of contemporary elements and more mythical themes. This is an author to watch (in her own right) and a recommended read.

It presents their personal travails as they navigate the murky waters of remaining independent whilst dealing with a frail elderly parent. Their eighty-five year old father, James, is a retired Professor of Particle Physics. He was married online Political Sites dating for sixty-four years to the equally intelligent but now dead Anna. Since breaking his hip, James cannot manage the stairs in his cottage so sleeps alone on a single bed at street level. They therefore hire a live-in carer to enable him to stay in his own home several hours drive from where they live.

Finding a carer willing to move to a sleepy Cotswold village and give James the attention he requires proves a challenge. After a couple of false starts they find Mandy, an overweight and garrulous fifty-two year old who arrives with impeccable references. The recently morose James is transformed under her care. Gone are the stimulating conversations and intellectual musings. In their place is an interest in village gossip, scratch cards, daytime TV and visits to shopping centres.

Robert and Phoebe retreat feeling both relieved and guilty. Robert is writing a novel in his garden shed in London, avoiding his beautiful and successful wife who goads him about his failures. Phoebe, an artist living in a small Welsh town where every second person harbours artistic tendencies, is indulging in an affair with a local woodsman. Both siblings feel frustrated at the direction their lives have taken, blaming parents they remember from childhood as neglectful.

It gently mocks office work, and unrealistic expectations in relationships where each partner will try to mould the other rather than accepting difference

Mandy berates Robert and Phoebe for still harbouring grudges against their parents. She has little time for such self-pity when they are farming out their father’s care. As her employers, the siblings do not appreciate being spoken to so plainly. Privately they worry that what Mandy is saying may be true.

His children, Robert and Phoebe, wish to continue with their own lives unencumbered by their father’s practical needs

Story chapters are told from key characters’ points of view. The reader learns the bare bones of the siblings’ backstories, their thwarted desires and concerns. As Robert and Phoebe go through their days, James and Mandy appear to be getting on well. There is, however, a growing suspicion that the affable carer is not trustworthy. Phoebe and Robert prevaricate over whether they are being paranoid or if they should be concerned. And yet, do the family want to lose a carer doing a job they are unwilling to take on themselves?

Testimonials

Even though I am over a half a Century old, I have been inspired by the group to go for higher education. I have applied to the University of Regina and I got accepted. I plan on taking classes there and there and I pray and hope I will be successful to obtain two more degrees before I reach age 55. I want to be a role model for the students, my family, and the community. Before retiring I will tackle Masters.

Jimmy Charles
Stanley Mission Rhoda Hardlotte Memorial High School

I really appreciate the SUTIL group and connections of associate members.  This makes planning a career day so much easier.  Thank you!

Shelly Fransoo
John Paul II Collegiate

Great Opportunity to allow students and parents to get the information from the institutions themselves.

John Svenson
Melville Comprehensive

Fantastic service to students in remote areas many of whom are not exposed to their opportunities in life.

Clarence Neault
Senator Myles Venne School

Was a great morning!  Kids were highly engaged and had the opportunity to see a lot of options for post secondary!

Michelle Wolf
Carnduff Education Complex

Easy to plan. Great opportunity for students! Presenters were excellent and engaging. I thought it was great. Good diversity of options for students. Awesome!

Jeff Pederson
Aden Bowman

The event is very well organized and provides students with a great student:presenter ratio.

Darin Faubert
Wadena Composite

Looking forward to having you come again next year.

Ryan Johnson
Davidson and Kenaston School

The SUTIL Booths Only event allows students and parents/guardians to connect with recruiters from a wide variety of institutions and receive pertinent information firsthand in a relaxed atmosphere.

Donna Bouchard
Marion M. Graham Collegiate

I appreciate the ease of planning this event. Communication was excellent and efficient.  I love the SWAG that students and I get.

Bonnie Baron-Williams
Thom Collegiate

I appreciate all of the communication from the institutes ! Everything is well organized! Thanks!

Kipp Bayer
Sturgis Composite School

Happy Friday the 13th of December,

Thank you for The SUTIL Scoop and the SUTIL team visit at Rhoda Hardlotte Keethanow High School in Northern Saskatchewan. I noticed some of the team members were into Volleyball during the noon hour. Maybe that is how the team works; to have fun and to laugh and to warm up before presenting to the students and staff. Great Team! Thank you once again, SUTIL Team.

Jimmy Charles
Guidance Counselor-Stanley Mission

Hi Linda and Cheryl,

Thank you on behalf of Nutana Collegiate for bringing your event to our students. I have been hearing nothing but positive feedback in the building since this morning. Being new in the career facilitator role in my building, I can’t tell you how grateful I am for having such a well-organized and easy (from the host school perspective) event to offer to my students. All of the hard work that you have put in is much appreciated. I look forward to future events.

Shona Iverson-Career Facilitator
Nutana Collegiate

Say Hello!

    Book Your Event →

    Become an Associate SUTIL Member →