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3.77  ·  Rating details ·  290 ratings  ·  46 reviews
Touching on mental health, family, friendship and the pressures that teenage carers face, as author Cat Clarke says, TENDER is "a compassionate, compelling and unflinching novel". Marty and Daisy spend their lives pretending. Marty pretends his mum's grip on reality isn't slipping by the day. Daisy pretends her parents aren't exhausting themselves while they look after her ...more
Paperback, 298 pages
Published March 1st 2018 by Scholastic
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Average rating 3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  290 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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Jun 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
A beautiful story about the reality of life and the challenge of friendship. Both Marty and Daisy have challenges going on at home. Marty’s mum is falling apart, which Daisy is constantly worried for her brother. Marty feels alone, like no one understands what he is going through. Daisy is surrounded by girls who are too interested in boys and have no care for real world problems.

When these two meet, everything changes.

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was an easy read, but challenges you
Tender is a touching story about two young carers and the trials of their difficult home lives. Eve Ainsworth perfectly contrasts these difficulties against the everyday ‘norm’ for other young people their age: the homework worries, boy trouble etc. Things like that just aren’t a big deal for Marty or Daisy, who have much more going on behind closed doors than others realise. But this is not a story of difficulty and gloom, there are plenty of light moments and some touching scenes between the t ...more
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This story deals with two incredibly difficult living situations for teenagers, Daisy and Marty. Whilst one must deal with the physical battles her family has to face with her brother's muscle wasting disease, the other has to cope with the mental health issues his mother deals with every day. The two contrasting families fight very different things, but somehow Daisy and Marty manage to find common ground in the position their lives have put
Karen Barber
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Once again, Eve Ainsworth takes a tough issue and presents it to us in a way that we can’t help but be affected by.
In this novel Ainsworth focuses on young carers and the effect their role can have on them. We have Marty, whose mum is depressed and refusing help, and we have Daisy, whose younger brother has a condition which is gradually weakening his body and which impacts on every aspect of family life.
Both characters share some traits. They try to bear their issues alone, and try not to burde
Michelle Moore
Feb 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the second book I've read by this author, and she has a way of taking complex situations, and making them approachable for young people. In Tender, Eve looks at the important subject of young carers - Marty has been living with his mum's deteriorating mental health since the death of his father, whilst Daisy has a severely ill younger brother, and exhausted parents trying to cope in their own way.

Both of these teenagers are trying to persuade everyone else that everything is fine, and Ma
Brittany Smith
Mar 24, 2018 rated it liked it
If I could give it 3.5 stars I would. It was a story that hooked me in and yes I enjoyed it very much!
There were a couple things that let me down though (hence the 3). The first was the ending was quite abrupt and that’s that. I was hoping for a bit more or even an epilogue to tie loose ends and close the stories nicely. The other was, though each character has a sad tale there is no real tragedy. I know it sounds cold and callous of me but I feel like if there was a poignant OMG moment then th
Apr 23, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Reuben Thomas
Mar 10, 2018 rated it liked it
'...All in all, Tender is a wonderful book. A really faithful representation of what life can be like for young carers, with a sweet, subtle hint of romance, and a look at social class, family dynamics, and teenage friendships. A perfect introduction to some heavy topics, I feel like Tender would be a great book to incorporate into PSHE lessons to support teaching on social issues for younger teens, but also an enjoyable book in its own right for anyone who reads YA.'

Full review here: http://jes
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a really quick but engaging read. It's just a tiny snippet of two teenagers' complicated lives, but it really is an eye-opener. It'll make you think twice before you judge others in future, and prompt you to consider what might be going on behind closed doors that might be making someone behave the way they are.
It also does a great job of encouraging young people to seek help should they need it, from social services or similar, rather than carrying the weight of it all on their own shou
Anna DIN0033
May 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Such a thoughtful read. Eve just keeps getting better and better
Alyce Hunt
Tender tells the story of two young carers, Marty and Daisy. The novel illuminates the similarities and differences between their lives: Marty, whose mum is on the verge of having a breakdown following the death of his father, and Daisy, whose brother Harry has muscular dystrophy and is certain to die before his time.

Attending the same young carers group, the two quickly become friends. But with so much to deal with will their relationship have the chance to develop into something more?

Tender is
Feb 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: yalc
It's okay.
I'm fine.
Everything is alright.

These feel like such little lies at times, the kind of thing you say to be polite, or to avoid awkward or personal conversations. I know I use them, probably more than I should.

For Marty and Daisy, in Tender, however, they become a way of life.

Marty is sixteen years old, and caring for his mother through what I think is depression. She has days when she never leaves her bed and then manic phases. His dad is dead and his mother's boyfriend is a complete wa
Aug 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is heart-breaking but so very necessary. I have enjoyed reading Eve Ainsworth’s books because they tend to be about tough subjects written in a raw and real way. I think it’s so important that young adults have material like this out there to read. Her books do often come with a warning that it has sensitive content within the story- so if you feel like it might trigger you then I don’t necessarily recommend reading them. However, if you can manage to read the tough content then I thin ...more
Eve beinguniquebooks
Jun 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Marty lives with his mum who's depression has worsened since his dad's sudden tragic death. His dad's friend J moved in but really only looks out for himself as he often disappears down to the pub.

Daisy is dealing with her worn out mum, hard working dad and little brother whom suffers with muscular dystrophy.

The pair meet randomly at a Christmas market and later properly at a young carers meeting Marty is new to and from there see each other in school too after realizing that they both go to the
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-proof, 2018
Eve has done it again. She really knows how to write such a gripping book that will pull on your heartstrings and always is to do with something that we need more off in YA. She isn't afraid to take chances and this is possibly my favourite book by Eve.

This book is about young careers. I was excited to see that she was writing a book about young careers because my auntie works with young careers and when I was younger I was always with her to help out and we would take them out on fun days so
Nov 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've never really connected with Eve Ainsworth's books before (perhaps because they are at the younger end of YA, and feel a bit like Jacqueline Wilson aged up) but Tender struck a chord with me, especially in relation to the innevitability of Harry's condition, and I felt genuinely upset and tearful close to the end because the turn of events at home for both protagonists was so awful. I am rarely moved like that by books so that was an achievement - although my tearfulness may also have been b ...more
Jan 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing

This is the story about two teenagers , Daisy and Marty. Both teenagers are struggling with their family life and managing the day to day running of their personal life because of it . The story covers many topics like mental illness , incurable illness , family relationships ( esp when under severe stress) . I read this book in one go as I really cared for these two main characters , both are good people with big generous hearts who are going through such an awful time but they are not letting
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this story of Marty and Daisy, two teenagers with big family issues. Marty's mother suffers from debilitating depression, since the death of her husband, while Daisy's younger brother has muscular dystrophy, and takes up most of his parents time. Both teenagers feel alone, drowning in events they can't control. They bear their issues silently, refusing to burden others until they meet each other at a young carers' group.

Told from both view points in alternating chapters, I was soon eng
Rachel Bridgeman
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
This copy was gratefully received from Lovereading4kids in return for an honest review. My honest is review is that this actually made my heart hurt. Rarely do you seen teens written about so authentically, or genuine poverty expressed so well. This is the tale of two teens who are broken but trying to fit themselves into a semblance of life. One is sidelined by her parents due to the arrival of a sickly younger sibling. The other is fighting to keep his family together because the adults in his ...more
Kenmore SHS
Jun 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
The cover is simple but compelling and I had heard good things about this author. An aspect of the book I enjoyed was the use of character and point of view changes. The most memorable part of the novel was the ending. Ainsworth takes the darkest ideas and fears of the characters in the story but uses them to show her audience a new perspective on a difficult issue. People who are struggling with mental illness will appreciate how raw and human the characters feelings are. the subjects and issue ...more
Tender is a book with a message, and to be honest the story was more a vehicle for the message rather than the other way round. I do think it's a good book to be written--I have not had much cause to think about young carers, even if I abstractly know that they exist in developed countries as well as developing ones. This book is as juvenile as the characters, and would probably be great for kids who are the same age. It was entirely obvious to me, and that's a good thing. but it doesn't bear re ...more
Sean Harding
Dec 07, 2018 rated it liked it
The fourth book I have read from this author and she seems to be developing some genuine skills, her books, including the have a real feel about them, and whilst sometimes they are confronting and a little uncomfortable that is not necessarily a bad thing because they are making you think, and challenge what you believe and think, which is a good thing.
A good story here, from a very interesting author.
Jan 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Told in the dual-narrative style, Tender is the story of two Young Carers, Marty and Daisy. It's candid, insightful and touching, and ultimately raises an important question: is it wrong to ask for help?

I liked Marty and Daisy. Their perspective on being Young Carers, coping with their circumstances and what the future holds for them was both tangible and valuable. The externalised power struggle between hope, fear, strength and weakness lent the story a strong connection to its title.

Aug 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
I think it’s a very important book. Sad, touching, but makes you think about your life and people around you.
I love the message it conveys.
It is a simply written, with not too much description. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but I wish more effort went into the writing style.

A full review will be posted on my blog:
Jul 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 rounded up. this novel was super raw and emotional and i enjoyed the amount of vulnerability the characters showed.

it’s main flaw was the insta-love between daisy and marty. from the second they meet, they have a ~connection~ which i didn’t love but considering it was a <300 page book, it was understandable.
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really like it :D The story was really good and I couldn't resist so I finished it in two days. It got me crying at some points. I can't imagine having to live like that, that's so sad that it's the reality for some people. I hope that this story reaches your heart and soul like it did mine. ...more
Sep 06, 2018 rated it liked it
This book was fairly good. It was a quick read and I enjoyed the writing. It's quite heavy, but otherwise an enjoyable easy read. I thought it was a good story about how shitty life can be but how nice it is finding someone who you can talk to about how shit life is. ...more
Feb 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Impossible to put down. Loved it so much.

YET: It feels like it isn't quite complete yet. It was left on a cliffhanger and possibly needs a second book to dive into Harry, Marty's mother, J, and what was between Marty and Daisy.
Kate Atkinson
Feb 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
A sweet story of two teens dealing with big family issues, whose lives intersect at their 'young carers' support group. Looking at the severe impact family dysfunction can have on others in the home - a tale of blossoming romance in the midst of turmoil. ...more
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