"Perhaps all family histories are made up of secrets and lies. Why should mine be any different?"
“This is a wonderful book – entrancing and gripping. Judy Simons takes us all on a vivid journey of discovery of her own family history. She writes beautifully, and with warmth, affection and humour. It is a genuinely rewarding read”. Google reviewer 5*
After thirty years as an academic, doing research is second nature to me. That’s another way of saying that I’m a naturally nosy person. I was born and brought up in Sheffield, studied English at university and became a university Professor. My family were leading lights in the local Jewish community, and a sense of cultural identity was instilled into me from childhood.
Although I took early retirement from academic life, I never really left it and now hold a research fellowship at London University. I spend about 50% of my time writing and reading.
And the other 50%? Well, I work with City CV, a company that helps people develop their career paths. I’m a Trustee of the Girls Day School Trust, a network of 25 schools across England and Wales that educates confident, happy and fearless young women to take their place in today’s society. And, because I believe passionately that the arts are central to community life, I’m Chair of the glorious Buxton Opera House, a heritage theatre in the beautiful Peak District, close to where I now live.
I’ve been inspired by the power of literature to transform thinking. I want to pass on that passion to others, and, as someone who suffered sexual discrimination at work, I want to help girls and women realise their potential at all stages of their lives. Watching my two wonderful daughters build successful professional and family lives for themselves has taught me a lot. My latest book is in part a legacy for them and their children to remind us all how our lives are shaped by the past.