Financially struggling office temp, Helen Johnson, thinks she’s been given the wrong handbook to live by. No matter how hard she tries, the Great Australian Dream of happy family, home ownership and career success is slipping further away. When Helen’s husband is laid off at work, she needs to step up and get serious about her career to keep on top of their killer mortgage.
When the position of Home Services Manager becomes available at St Clare’s Elder Care where she works, Helen thinks it is the answer to her problems. The Home Services Department is a mess, but if she can turn it around, she will have a chance at winning the role.
Helen works hard to deliver in home services to her elderly clients and often takes work home on weekends. She hires former football star turned gardener, Matthew Williams, who proves to be a great success. He catches up on the backlog of gardening and maintenance work, and plans to build a sensory garden for client, Carol McKenzie.
Helen misses out on the Home Services Manager role when Accountant Yasmin Soo is seconded from Head Office. She fights to win it back when she learns that Yasmin is neglecting her elderly clients, but proving her case to boss, John McPhee, is not easy.
Then Helen learns there is a side to Matthew she did not know about. He walks out on the sensory garden she has paid him in full to do and she reads an article in the paper about him ripping off his clients.
Unable to win the promotion and save the family home, Helen leaves St Clare’s. While she does not achieve her goals, she gains a new awareness and loses her naivety. She learns to accept life as it is and not how she wants it to be.
With unaffordable housing and job insecurity, many Australians are struggling to achieve The Great Australian Dream today. THE SENSORY GARDEN will resonate with them as it is about the lived experience of trying to live according to an outdated template.
THE SENSORY GARDEN is a Contemporary Women’s Fiction novel of 76 500 words and has the economic hardships of ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF DIRT by Rick Morton and the family crisis of ISLANDS by Peggy Frew.
I live in the Eastern Suburbs of Melbourne with my family and I work in Aged Care. THE SENSORY GARDEN is my first novel. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to assist further.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
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