I've just finished a book called On the Edge by Charlie Carroll, which is about a young English teacher who took a year out from his career to travel around England and work in the most challenging schools he could find. It was a truly amazing book, which stands head and shoulders above all the other teacher-memoirs I have read, like Francis Gilbert or Frank Chalk. Carroll's sheer tenacity alone should be applauded - he spent an entire year living in his campervan and working in difficult schools in places like London, Birmingham and Bradford. But his writing style is also brilliant - I started the book on a Monday and finished it by the following Wednesday. I couldn't put it down! I work at a particularly challenging school myself, and everything Carroll said struck a chord with me. I kept sighing and thinking - "yep, that's about right". For anyone who wants to read the most revealing, insightful and realistic book about what it is truly like to teach in twenty-first century England, this is a must.