Cathy Glass has been a foster carer for over 20 years and during that time she has written many books about the children she has fostered. The Night the Angels Came tells the uplifting true story of a courageous young boy who relies on his love and faith in the face of tragedy. 

The story begins when Cathy receives a call about a terminally ill widower who wants to ensure that his eight-year-old son Michael will be cared for when he is no longer able to. Cathy questions whether her family are ready to deal with a young child in the depths of despair, as she has recently separated from her husband. However, her children insist that Michael deserves to be happy and believe that their family can give that to him. The book follows Cathy and her children as they welcome Michael and his father into their lives. Michael’s bravery, strength and faith at a time of sadness are at the heart of the book.

…some may find using a tragedy for entertainment unsettling.

Because of the subject matter, this autobiography has the potential to be an uncomfortable read. Yet the fact that it is a true story lends the book poignancy. Although the story is incredibly sad and deals with the heavy subject matter of terminal illness, there are uplifting moments of lightness, warmth and happiness, such as scenes with Michael’s father and when Michael is welcomed into Cathy’s home. Nevertheless, some readers may find using an extremely personal and terrible tragedy for a form of entertainment unsettling.

Glass’s prose often sound stilted and lack fluidity; throughout the book many actions are described unnecessarily. Although these descriptions help to create an impression of the home life Cathy is providing for Michael, these insignificant domestic details are unessential to the main subject and distract the reader. And, although this is a true story, occasionally the dialogue can seem a little contrived and unrealistic. Periodically, the reader may feel detached from the story and the people within it, which doesn’t reflect the obvious attachment Cathy and her family have to Michael.

The Night the Angels Came is at times a thought-provoking and moving book; it reminds you of what is important and will leave you feeling humbled by a young boy’s courage.

The book is published by Harper Element and is available for £6.99

2½ Stars

 

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