What does it mean to be poor? For decades the dominant narrative in the UK and US has been that it is caused by personal flaws or ‘bad life decisions’. People are ‘lazy’, ‘dependent’ and ‘irresponsible’. This ‘story’ has become embedded in the public consciousness with serious ramifications for how financially vulnerable people are seen, spoken about and treated. Drawing on a two-year story-telling project and her own experience of childhood poverty, this book by award-winning journalist and author Mary O’Hara, argues for a radical overhaul of this fundamentally pernicious portrayal. Crucially, it turns to the real experts to try to find answers – the people who live it.