As the middle of five kids growing up in dire poverty, the odds were low on Katriona O’Sullivan making anything of her life. She became a mother at 15 and ended up homeless. Five rackety years followed – barely coping, drinking to escape – until Katriona, now living in her father’s native Dublin, hit rock bottom. ‘Poor’ is the extraordinary story – moving, funny, brave, and sometimes startling – of how Katriona turned her life around. During her schooldays there had been teachers who looked out for her – beacons of stability in a chaotic childhood. They planted seeds of self-belief. In Dublin when she sought help, she found mentors whose encouragement revived that self-belief. She got clean, got a flat and a job as a cleaner and, eventually, got into Trinity College. Today Dr Katriona O’Sullivan is an award-winning lecturer whose work explores barriers to education.
‘One of the best [books] I have read about the complexities of poverty . . . one of the most remarkable people you will ever meet’ Guardian
‘An amazing story . . . moving, uplifting, brave, heroic, shocking at times’ Nuala McGovern, Woman’s Hour, BBC
‘They should put it on the leaving cert . . . an extraordinary book’ Brendan O’Connor, RTÃ Radio One
‘[Poor] is absolutely brilliant. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It is, as far as I’m concerned, the book of the year!’ Pat Kenny, Newstalk
‘One of the most important books I have ever read . . . a beautiful telling of determination despite the odds’ Lynn Ruane, Irish Times
‘We love a rags-to-riches story, and we love to see someone triumph through sheer determination. But the story is rarely that simple. My story isn’t, anyway.’
As the middle of five kids growing up in dire poverty, the odds were low on Katriona O’Sullivan making anything of her life. When she became a mother at 15 and ended up homeless, what followed were five years of barely coping.
This is the extraordinary story – moving, funny, brave, and sometimes startling – of how Katriona turned her life around. How the seeds of self-belief planted by teachers in childhood stayed with her. How she found mentors whose encouragement revived those seeds in adulthood.
Katriona is now an award-winning lecturer whose work challenges barriers to education. Poor is her stirring argument for the importance of looking out for our kids’ futures. Of giving them hope, practical support and meaningful opportunities.
‘[Poor] is moving, funny, brave and original – just like the author . . . an absolutely incredible read’ RÃ³isÃ¬n Ingle, Irish Times’ Women’s Podcast
‘Deeply moving and thought-provoking’ Louise O’Neill
‘Fearless, funny and searingly honest’ Adil Ray OBE
‘A fascinating story of overcoming great adversity, so well told’ Matt Cooper, Today FM
‘Raw and remarkable’ Irish Independent
‘An incredible read’ Business Post
‘Stunning’ Eilis O’Hanlon
‘Poor shows the strength of Katriona O’Sullivan’s unbreakable spirit – she is a beacon of light’ Patricia Scanlan
‘A deeply affecting tale of resilience’ The i newspaper
|Dimensions||21.6 × 13.5 × 2.2 cm|
General – Trade / Code: K