My Brother's Keeper
This is a novel about a young woman who is introduced to a vulnerable, divorced man, at her friend Claire’s house, falls for him, has an affair with him and is shocked when he takes his own life. Seeking understanding, she goes back to her parent’s home in London and when seeking for something positive that she can do with her life, her father suggests volunteering as a Samaritan. Glenda becomes a Samaritan and is successful at first, surprised at the number of distressed people; shocked at the number of sex callers but, seeking to offer more help than she is authorised to give. When she becomes friendly outside the centre where she works with another young man, Harry, a telephone caller, she has no choice but to leave. Harry however sets her a new set of problems; he is bipolar and at times of deep depression, liable also to be suicidal. Glenda and Harry strike up a strained relationship in which she becomes his personal support when in deep depression but the strain begins to extract a heavy toll on her. She tries to persuade him to come home after a harrowing suicide attempt in the Hampshire countryside. In the aftermath of this she travels back to London and seeks out an old friend of Harry’s from the past to find out more about him. When she returns home, freshly enlightened about Harry, she plucks up courage to visit and talk to her old lover David’s wife, Isabel. This meeting is illuminating but not in the way she had expected but, suitably informed she can now come to terms with her own plans for the future.