The Waterhouse Girl

(1 customer review)

THE WATERHOUSE GIRL was the story that started it all. In it, Sue explored alopecia through the character of Daisy Waterhouse – which was a kind of therapy. She never foresaw that Daisy would help her overcome her fear, or that readers with alopecia would be strengthened too.
With her bird’s nest hair, Daisy Waterhouse has never been as pretty as her favourite pictures. But when that hair starts to fall out by the handful, she has no idea how difficult life will become. Starting afresh in a new town is hard enough without her dad. Her best friend is in Australia, and for Tamsin next-door, being seen with Daisy isn’t good for a model girl’s image. Baldness is hard to hide, and the school bully is on hand to make it impossible. It’s only in her diary that she reveals her true feelings, but deep down Daisy knows there are only so many secrets she can keep. When she meets Flame the eco-activist, weekends by the Thames bring freedom and friendship along with surprises, headlines and new battles to fight. With unexpected help – from George, an off-the-wall loner, and a stranded baby whale – Daisy is determined to hold her head high. But it takes a lot more courage than she could ever have imagined.

Beautifully written… insightful… poignant
Michael Morpurgo


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The Waterhouse Girl


1 review for The Waterhouse Girl

  1. Linsey Painter

    Daisy Waterhouse has a lot going on. Her parents are getting a divorce, her best friend, Jess is moving to Australia, she has to move house, change schools and she’s got a secret, Daisy is losing her hair. There’s a shiny, smooth bald patch at the back of her head. For the first time in her life she is happy that her hair is nothing like the perfectly groomed hair of the Waterhouse girls in her favourite paintings. It’s wild and massively abundant so maybe having one bald patch won’t make any difference.
    But when her hair starts clogging up the shower drain and her hairbrush, Daisy knows something big is happening. The only place she can reveal her true feelings in is her diary but secrets have a habit of being exposed. Will Daisy be strong enough when hers comes out into the open?
    She has to be strong for her mum who is heartbroken after the divorce. She has to be strong for her dad who is clueless in his new life and she has to be strong for herself as she starts at a new school. Being strong can’t be that hard, can it?
    But then there’s Kevin, the bully at Daisy’s new school who is determined to paint her as an outcaste. There’s Tamsin, her new neighbour who is ‘perfectly’ beautiful and now thinks Daisy is weirder than ever. Nina from Poland doesn’t speak much English and George scares everyone at school but sticks up for Daisy. Then there is Flame, her fellow eco-activist. Flame is different and cool and passionate about the same things Daisy is. And he looks at her eyes and not at her head.
    As Daisy’s hair vanishes almost overnight she has to gather together all her courage to keep going to school everyday, keep smiling and keep being strong. Thank goodness she doesn’t have to do it on her own.
    Daisy’s story is funny, heartbreaking, encouraging and real.
    Alopecia is a serious condition that is hard to accept and hard to understand. Sue Hampton doesn’t sugar coat the difficulties but Daisy’s story is easy and enjoyable as well as serious.
    Sue Hampton knows first hand what it is like to lose her hair. She does an amazing job of exploring Daisy’s experience through the emotional upheavals and triumphs. The Waterhouse Girl is such an enjoyable story. I myself have alopecia and it was refreshing to read a story that I could relate to on such a deep level.
    I loved all the different characters in the story alongside Daisy. They are all on their own journey’s, their own ups and downs. Sue Hampton does a great job of creating real characters who are relatable and likeable.
    I recommend The Waterhouse Girl to kids from 9 years old and up.

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