Reader Reviews

Family & More

"Family and More, a book of poetry by Helena Harper, is like a poetic synopsis of a wartime saga, the life of a family with a backdrop of history, a memoir told in poetic blurbs. The author encapsulates characters and events breathtakingly. There is so much here to think about once one turns the last page. I was left wanting more! More!...."  Carolyn Howard-Johnson, multi-award winning writer and poet, 

"Family and More enlightens the reader to the conflicts and confusion that exist in a family divided by war. Being the child of a German mother and English father in the aftermath of WWII, the author delves into her family’s history by examining the lives of several family members as well as other personal relationships. Each poem is an intertwined life. With descriptive imagery these people come alive; you see their struggles and triumphs.
      This wonderful poetic story goes beyond a family history; it depicts the futility, frustration and hardship of war, along with the frailties and strengths of the people that make up each of our families. Family and More – Enemies or Friends? is a beautifully written book. I highly recommend it." Karen Cioffi, Author and Freelance Writer, DKV Writing 4U, co-author of Day's End Lullaby 

"Helena Harper’s Family and More offers an interesting insight into a wide spectrum of human relationships. It is a collection of life stories told with tenderness, fondness and humour, yet interspersed with a powerful critique of the futility and unnatural nature of warfare. A child of ‘fused’ parentage, Harper questions the way in which labels such as ‘enemy’ are attached to others. Ultimately, she questions how one’s identity is constructed and stresses the importance of individual strength of character in the face of adversity. A charming read, each verse emphasises the good at the heart of the human relationship and stresses the importance of optimism and hope." Lady Teviot, President of the Federation of Family History Societies in the UK and owner of genealogical research company, Census Searches Ltd.

“Thank you so much for allowing me to read your wonderful book. I loved it! I became totally engrossed in the story. A wonderfully told story of a family’s love and courage in the face of war and hardship. All of the pain and joy over the years comes to life on every page. I would, and I will highly recommend this book to anyone who loves to read. This is a book that I will enjoy reading over and over.”  Charles R. James, author of  'The Reason for My Journey'

“The poems are absolutely wonderful and perfect - it's an epic, multi-generational collection that tells of major, international events of great historical value and have characters that come alive, whom you just fall in love with. You have written a story that could be as epic as 'Gone With The Wind' and 'The Titanic'. I love it! I love the whole concept of that little girl and her family from opposite sides of the war. You have some really dynamic conclusions, recognitions and discoveries about self, family, people, nations and WAR. The challenge of a child, a young woman, resolving what nations could not, in order to integrate all her loves into who she is and honor their values and courage. It is so good. 
      You are such a skilled storyteller, 80 pages felt like 20. It went so fast and ended way too soon. It is absolutely the stuff of greatness, it has an inspirational and loving feel and wisdom that may be "just yours", but it is priceless. Thank you!”  B.W. 

"Helena captures the impact family members (and friends) have on our lives and our conditioning. The flow of her words draws you in and before long, you begin to feel a part of the family, experiencing what it was like for her being a daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece and an aunt.  There are family 'leadership' lessons to be had on many levels in the wonderful verses. Helena has brought back forgotten leadership wisdom - so apt and so much needed in the 21st Century." Kwai Yu, CEO, Leaders Cafe 2020 Ltd.

It's a Teacher's Life...!

“This is a wonderful collection of poems that were written from the heart. This work would be an absolutely wonderful gift for any teacher in your life; it would be a wonderful gift and read for anyone wishing to understand not only teachers, but all people who dedicate their lives to service. Love this small glimpse into a remarkable woman's life, and I do hope more is to follow.” Don Blankenship, Amazon Top Reviewer

“Highly entertaining, well-written poetry.” Grady Harp, Amazon Top Reviewer
“In a short, light way, Harper's book explores the frustrations of the teacher's life. Through the short-term difficulty and travail, she captures something of its significance as well. This is a delightful little book.” Robin Friedman, Amazon Top Reviewer

“This is a little book of free verse which cleverly and humorously depicts every aspect of a British private school for girls, from the point of view of a teacher.  Having attended an all-girls' school modeled on the British system, I'd like to join in saluting the long-suffering and often under-appreciated teachers and support staff that do so much for so many. "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few (Sir Winston Churchill)”. Amanda Richards, Amazon Top Reviewer

“The book is fairly short and small in page size as well. It is an easy sit down in a day or two and read from cover to cover length. However, what I found was that I would read a poem or two and just appreciate the work. The poems were heartfelt and very accurate. There is a poem about awards and the few awards that teachers receive when really what they want are thanks but get so few of them too. The one that really hit right on target is about testing and how testing is but one day and not really a complete picture of the year and the yard work a teacher puts forth... Well worth the money. Enjoy.”  'apoem', Amazon Top Reviewer

“Helena gives us a fresh insight into what it's like to be a teacher. The approach is sometimes serious, sometimes whimsical, always delightful. I could almost smell the wood from the building, and hear the excited chattering between classes. I could also feel the rush of the hectic lives of teachers.  This is a tasteful and delightful collection of poems.”  Dallas D'angelo-gary “aka: Simon Bookmonger”

“Both younger readers and adults can relive experience and learn a lot from this highly enjoyable and beautifully written evocation of school life.” Ex-teacher trainer

“What a great book! Each poem - sometimes moving, often cynical, always funny - rings so true and keeps you wanting for more. A real gem, Miss Harper!” AC

“This collection of poems goes to the heart of life in a girls' school. The poems are funny, wry and sensitive. The people come alive - we can all relate to Amy, Matron and others who are portrayed with warmth and fun. A lovely collection of light relief - I look forward to more!” Magic Hands