Faith Scott, with Lynne Barrett-Lee



‘I didn’t really know why Pop frightened me so much, only that I felt the familiar anxiety well up as he tried to coax me gently from behind the kitchen door.  In his hand he held sweets, several packets.

“Come on, then,” he said now.  Pop never used my name. “Come on. I won’t hurt you. Come and get them.”  As was always the case, I felt completely unable to make up my mind. Yet I couldn’t work out what was the matter with me. Why did I hesitate? Why did I feel so much fear? I was only being offered sweets, for goodness sake…’

Born the third of eight children, into a life of rural squalor, Faith Scott’s infant world is already more challenging than most. Bewildered by the madness of her mentally ill mother and terrified by the outbursts of her cold, violent father, the only certainty in life is that there is none. So when Grandad  gives her sweets and does the horrid things he does to her, how is she to know that isn’t what all Grandads do?  And if it isn’t, why does mummy find it funny?

Told with honesty and courage, Bitter Sweet is the story of a little girl who never stood a chance.  It is also the result of Faith’s decades-long journey to find the strength to find the words to tell the truth.

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